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Warning over wind turbine collapse on Devon farm

Energy Secretary Ed Davey has warned wind farm operators to make sure their equipment is safe after a Devon turbine turbine was toppled in strong gusts.

He said those running wind farms had the same responsibilities for safety as firms running other industrial sites.

The 115ft (35m) wind turbine collapsed at East Ash Farm, near Holsworthy, early on Sunday.

Dulas, the Welsh company which installed the turbine, is investigating with the manufacturer.

‘Windy night’

Mr Davey told the House of Commons: “Clearly, people who develop and run and maintain wind farms, as with any sort of industrial installation, have to make sure that they are fit and aren’t a danger to the public.

“Otherwise various authorities will come down on them and they will find themselves liable.”

Margaret Coles, chairwoman of Bradworthy District Council, said the turbine’s bolts had “gone”.

She said: “We know the bolts have gone but don’t know what caused it.

“It was a windy night – we do suffer from lots of high winds – but you would have thought the structure could cope with that.”