Alyth flooding: Trapped driver, 71, thanks rescuers

Firemen and members of the public rescued pensioner Jinty Young from her car during severe flooding in Alyth. Picture: Cascade News
Firemen and members of the public rescued pensioner Jinty Young from her car during severe flooding in Alyth. Picture: Cascade News
Have your say

A PENSIONER who was pulled to safety through the boot of her car after becoming trapped during a flash flood has thanked her rescuers.

Jinty Young, 71, was driving home from a shopping trip in her Ford Ka when the River Alyth burst its banks last Friday, sending a torrent of floodwater on to the streets.

Jinty Young. Picture: Cascade News

Jinty Young. Picture: Cascade News

Mrs Young’s car, along with several others, was submerged in the deluge.

Within minutes, the fast-flowing water was higher than the doors and Mrs Young was trapped inside.

Yesterday she paid tribute to Mark Worrall and John Ferguson, as well as two firefighters, who saw her plight and raced to help.

Mr Morrall stood waist-deep in floodwater and spoke to Mrs Young to keep her calm, while Mr Ferguson manoeuvred his digger close to the rear of her car.

“Mark came towards me through the torrential water,” she said. “He was calming me down and said he wasn’t going to leave me.

Residents blame beavers for flash floods in Alyth

“John Ferguson, the farmer, came over with his big digger and two firemen were in the bucket.”

Mrs Young gave the men her car keys and they managed to open the boot. She crawled through the car and was pulled out through the boot into the digger’s bucket.

Moments later, Mrs Young’s car became dislodged and was swept 240ft down the road.

“I gave them my car keys and they got me out the boot,” she said. “As soon as the dumper moved away, my car ended up at Parkside Road within seconds.”

She added: “Mark is an absolute hero to me – without him I would probably have tried to get out of the car and I can’t walk well.

“He came through that torrential flood and never thought of himself. I am so, so grateful to those four people.”

Ms Young said she was terrified by the ordeal but grateful to her saviours.

Mr Worrall’s wife, Jo, said her husband only did what anyone else would do.

She said she had been worried when she lost sight of him as Mrs Young’s car was swept away.

She said: “I thought Mark had drowned as soon as the cars started shifting. Once they got Jinty out they all swept away.

“I couldn’t see him and really panicked. I was so relieved to see him pop up in the garden – he looked like a drowned rat.

“Everyone who helped was fantastic and the community has pulled together in such a beautiful way.”

More than 750 homes were left without power and several motorists had to be rescued from their vehicles during last week’s flash floods in Alyth.

The village’s museum was also closed because of flood damage to carpets and electrical items, with current exhibitions cancelled. Perth and Kinross council officials have been criticised for a reported lack of support in the immediate aftermath of the flooding.

The flash flood is thought to have caused millions of pounds worth of damage and earlier this week it was claimed that it could take several months for some businesses and homes to be restored.

One councillor praised the “outstanding community spirit” following the deluge but added more should have been done by the council after the initial rescue work.