Storm Francis: Watch as firefighters rescue Broxburn residents in boats amid severe flooding

Emergency services spent much of last night evacuating local residents after heavy rainfall caused waist-high flooding in West Lothian.

Video footage has emerged showing the moment a young family were rescued from their homes by firefighters in a dingy after severe flooding in a cul-de-sac in Broxburn, West Lothian.

In total, 14 houses had to be abandoned by residents of Pyothall Court when flood defences built along the nearby Brox Burn failed on Thursday evening, after heavy rainfall that started at around 5pm.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Many were taken to the Strathbrock Partnership Centre for shelter and support.

A video, taken by Aimee Miller as she and her young son were evacuated by A Scottish Fire and Rescue (SFRS) water rescue team, shows wheelie bins floating in the background, with abandoned cars left submerged in the water.

Later she tweeted: “Street flooded… all of us rescued by the amazing fire brigade with their boats! Hope everyone else is ok.”

The SFRS said it received further reports of “significant flooding” incidents in Linlithgow and Ratho.

Many residents have now returned to their homes to begin the clean-up operation.

Photos from the scene this morning show rubbish, silt, and other debris left behind by the water, strewn across the gardens and driveways in Pyothall Court.

One pensioner at Pyothall Court revealed the extent of the damage to her home wrought by the foodwater.

Jean Hendrie said has been forced to stay with her daughter indefinitely while her “ruined” house undergoes extensive repairs.

The 70-year-old told the PA news agency: “Everything in the living room is ruined, the water was up to our knees.

In total, 14 houses had to be abandoned by residents of Pyothall Court when flood defences built along the nearby Brox Burn failed on Thursday evening, after heavy rainfall that started at around 5pm.

“The carpets are ruined, the floors are ruined,” she added.

“The rain came on really heavy at about 5pm and there is a burn behind the flood wall and the water came right over the wall.

“One of my neighbours was flooded and the water came right up to her kitchen worktops, and there are cars that are written off.

“We will not be able to stay here as the electricity is off, the carpet is soaked, there is silt everywhere.”

A video, taken by Aimee Miller as she and her young son were evacuated by A Scottish Fire and Rescue (SFRS) water rescue team, shows wheelie bins floating in the background, with abandoned cars left submerged in the water.

She said nothing like this has happened in the 21 years she has lived there.

SFRS said it had worked with other emergency services and local authorities to support those affected.

This latest devastation comes just two weeks after thunderstorms and heavy rain sparked widespread flooding across Fife and disrupted the region’s transport links, prompting officials there to declare a major incident.

And in Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire, tragedy struck when three people were killed as a ScotRail passenger train was struck by a landslide after a night of heavy showers.

ScotRail warned passengers across Scotland’s central belt this morning that its services would be delayed or cancelled because of the “extremely heavy rain flooding”, with several lines being blocked.

But the rail company has now confirmed that all lines affected by Thursday’s heavy rain have now reopened, and services are able to run again.

Jean Hendrie and William Craik cleaning their house in Pyothall Court in Broxburn, West Lothian after flooding.

A Message from the Editor

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive. We are now more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism.

Subscribe to the Edinburgh Evening News online and enjoy unlimited access to trusted, fact-checked news and sport from Edinburgh and the Lothians. Visit https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/subscriptions now to sign up.

By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.

Joy Yates

Editorial Director

Emergency services spent much of last night evacuating local residents after heavy rainfall caused waist-high flooding in West Lothian.
 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.