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Scotland’s Weather: Further downpours after floods

Tourists visiting Edinburgh yesterday refused to be daunted by the rain. Picture: Jane Barlow

Tourists visiting Edinburgh yesterday refused to be daunted by the rain. Picture: Jane Barlow

  • by ALASTAIR DALTON
 

SCOTS have been warned to expect further downpours after heavy rain caused flooding and made roads hazardous yesterday.

Rail passengers were faced with lengthy delays after a fallen tree blocked a major rail route and, elsewhere, signalling was knocked out by a power failure.

Forecasters say most of Scotland will continue to have wet weather but that while temperatures had dipped, they are expected to remain slightly above the July average.

The Met Office warned of rain for at least the next four days, with heavy and frequent showers in western Scotland today, and prolonged and heavy rain over much of the country on Thursday.

Among the heaviest rainfall yesterday was Dumfries and Galloway, where Eskdalemuir recorded 32mm (1.3in) in the 12 hours to noon. Leuchars in Fife also endured wet conditions, with 31mm recorded yesterday.

The Clanranald Trust for Scotland, a heritage group, was forced to cancel an event at Carron Valley and Duncarron, west of Falkirk, after all the roads leading to the area were flooded. Dozens of gardens in nearby Camelon were under water.

There were eight flood alert warnings in place for a time yesterday, covering most of Scotland.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency had warned of potentially “intense” rain in some areas.

Officials also reported that parts of Cumbria and Derbyshire received around their entire average July rainfall – four inches – within 12 hours.

The Scottish Government’s Traffic Scotland information service warned drivers yesterday: “A lot of surface water on the roads so remember to keep your distance from the car in front and reduce your speed.”

Routes affected by excess surface water included the M8, M74, and A90 between Edinburgh and Fraserburgh.

Traffic Scotland said wet and windy weather and gusts around 45mph had made driving difficult across the north east, Caithness and northern Sutherland.

It also warned of the danger of mist and fog patches reducing visibility on roads overnight and in the early morning, especially around Perth and Stirling, and across southern Scotland.

On the railways, a tree was blown down onto the Glasgow to Inverness line near Dunblane, which also carries services from Edinburgh.

The incident halted trains for some time as Network Rail engineers removed the tree from the approach to the Kippencross tunnel.

Rail officials were also investigating whether a power failure which knocked out signalling at Pitlochry, further north on the line, was connected with the weather.

A Network Rail spokeswoman said: “Work is ongoing on the power failure issue.

“We are working with Scottish Hydro, who supply power to that part of the network. Trains are running but with delays.”

Further disruption was caused by thieves stealing one mile of cable from the Aberdeen-Inverness line at Huntly, disruption which Network Rail said would continue today while cable is replaced.

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “Should those responsible be identified, we will push for the stiffest penalty possible. Cable theft is not only stupid and dangerous, it severely disrupts the network and the travelling public.”

Forecast

TODAY Sunshine and showers across the country and again, some heavy downpours possible, with a risk of local flooding especially in the Highlands. Temperatures around 20C.

TOMORROW Unsettled, with further showers, but not as heavy as recent days. Temperature will feel a bit fresher.

WEDNESDAY Probably the best day of the week, with some short-lived dry spells. Most places in Scotland will be dry and bright with temperatures topping 20C, according to Matt Roe, duty forecaster at the Met Office in Aberdeen.

 

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