Express & Star

Trees hit car and homes as high winds continue to disrupt the region

Fallen trees have damaged a car and homes in Walsall and Great Barr as high winds continue to cause chaos across the region, including trees coming down on rail lines.

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The disruption comes as the Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for parts of the West Midlands, with strong winds forecast throughout the day.

West Midlands Fire Service reported its attendance to a property on Elmbank Road, Yew Tree estate on the Walsall-Sandwell border where a tree had come down at a property and wrecked a car.

A Nissan Micra was wrecked on Elmbank Road, Walsall, after a tree fell on it during strong winds

The owner of the car, Uwais Riaz, said he had received a call from his wife early in the afternoon to tell him that the tree had fallen into their drive, blocking off the front door and smashing the car.

He said he was relieved that no one was hurt and was working out what to do next.

He said: "I got a call to say there had been a big smash outside, something like an earthquake or something, and my missus said she had gone out and found a huge tree across the drive.

A Nissan Micra was wrecked on Elmbank Road, Walsall, after a tree fell on it during strong winds

"It's completely smashed the car, as well as damaging some guttering and parts of the roof, and I think the car is pretty much a write off as the roof is caved, so I'm waiting to see what to do next.

"The materialistic things are just that and can be replaced, so I'm just thankful no one was walking around there at that time, including my wife and kids, on the drive."

Photos from Mr Riaz show the size of the tree and the amount of damage caused by the tree.

The tree fell across the roof of the car, caving it in. Photo: Uwias Riaz
It fell across the drive and car. Photo: Uwais Riaz

Crew were also on the scene of a similar incident on Old Oscott Hill in Great Barr.

The service confirmed that there were no injuries reported.

Emergency services were called to a disused building in Willenhall after roof tiles became loose.

Fire crew were at the scene of the three-storey property on Lower Lichfield Street at around 11.20am on Thursday.

The road was cordoned off by police as well as the nearby Froysell Street.

In a statement issued by West Midlands Fire Service at around 1pm, a spokesman said: "A fire engine from Bilston and a hydraulic aerial platform are in attendance.

"Roof tiles are loose on the roof of a void three-storey building.

"Crews are currently maintaining scene safety around the building. Due to high wind speeds, a plan on how to proceed is being formulated."

Fire crew were stood down from the incident at around 1.10pm.

The owner of the disused building is said to be in liaison with Walsall Council. The windy weather also caused disruption on the rail line across the region due to a number of trees falling on the tracks.

Passengers travelling between Hednesford and Rugeley were among those who faced disruption to their journeys.

West Midlands Railway reported a tree had fallen on the track between the two stations at around 12.30pm, but confirmed the incident had cleared by 3pm.

A tree blocked the railway line between Birmingham New Street and Lichfield City. Photo: West Midlands Railway

Disruption was also seen on the rail line between Birmingham New Street and Lichfield City as a result of a tree on the tracks at Wylde Green.

West Midlands Railway first made passengers aware of the issue at around 1pm and later advised that no services were expected to run on the cross-country line for the remainder of the day.

The travel company said the issue had been caused as a result of the tree bringing down the overhead wires.

Passengers stranded on a train on the rail line were rescued by fire crew near to Chester Road station.

West Midlands Railway have released a photo of the tree which fell across the line. Photo: West Midlands Railway

National Express West Midlands was accepting rail tickets across a number of its services including on the X3, which runs between Birmingham and Lichfield.

Elsewhere on the Midlands rail network, West Midlands Railway reported that a tree was blocking the line between Birmingham Snow Hill and Whitlocks End. A spokesperson said: "Due to the high winds, the tree below fell onto the line at Spring Road. Network Rail are working to clear the line.

"Services will remain disrupted through the early afternoon."

Services were running as normal by around 2.35pm.

The windy weather has also caused disruption to motorists, with West Midlands Roads having reported a fallen tree on Windmill Hill, Halesowen, at the Beecher Road junction, at around 2.20pm.

The incident is said to have caused congestion on the nearby Drews Holloway, with drivers having been advised to seek alternative routes.

Staffordshire County Council said its highways crews from had already had more than 50 storm-related emergency enquiries on Thursday morning, most of which related to fallen trees.

Power lines were also down on Sandon Bank in Stafford.