Flood warning as two-thirds of August rainfall lands in two days

Johnny Marr before he had to temporarily leave the Ross Bandstand stage  in Princes Street Gardens because of lightning. Picture: Calum Buchan.
Johnny Marr before he had to temporarily leave the Ross Bandstand stage in Princes Street Gardens because of lightning. Picture: Calum Buchan.
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The southern half of Scotland was on flood alert last night after some areas were drenched with two-thirds of August’s rainfall in two days.

The Queen’s Drive area of Kilmarnock was expected to flood after downpours swelled the River Irvine.

A flood warning for the area, also including New Mill Road and Samson Avenue, was issued by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa).

Lesser flood alerts were in force in ten areas covering the southern half of Scotland, with Sepa warned of “heavy, persistent rain” continuing into early today.

Scotland’s wettest place was Threave in Dumfries and Galloway, where nearly 80mm of rain fell between 9am on Friday and 9am yesterday.

The Scottish average for August is 117mm.

A Met Office yellow – be aware – severe weather warning for widespread and persistent rain all day yesterday covered Scotland south from Perth and Dundee.

The agency forecast 15- 30mm rain quite widely, with 40-50mm in a few places.

Lanes on several major routes were flooded, including on the M8 near the Kingston Bridge in Glasgow, and near Glasgow Airport.

Engineers were clearing a landslide which had blocked the A7 at Skippers Bridge, south of Langholm in Dumfries and Galloway.

Trunk road maintenance firm Amey said: “The road is still under traffic lights and the guys will remain on site through the day.”

There was also flooding on the A92 in Arbroath and in the centre of Forfar.

Sandbags were deployed in an effort to protect homes, including in Castle Douglas.

On the railways, the west coast main line reopened following flooding between Lockerbie and Penrith on Saturday which left tracks 1ft under water.

Multiple problems beset train passengers in Fife, with flooding and power failures knocking out signalling between Dalmeny, at the south end of the Forth Bridge, and Inverkeithing on Saturday night.

ScotRail said its focus had been to keep trains running, although some were significantly delayed.

Network Rail still expects to reopen the Crianlarich-Oban line today after repairs to rain damage near Tyndrum a week ago.

However, buses will replace trains between Glasgow and Crianlarich following a landslip near Arrochar on Friday, when some 20 tonnes of rock and trees fell over a 100ft stretch of the track.

The firm said: “Over the weekend we have been using rope access to remove vegetation and assess the stability of embankment above railway.

“We are also clearing debris from the track and blocked drains.

“As a result, the line between Garelochhead and Arrochar is closed.”

Work is continuing to repair a landslip a week ago south of Crianlarich, which will keep that section of the Glasgow-Mallaig line shut until a week on Thursday.

Some 3,000 tonnes of stone to shore up the track is having to be moved into position up a steep slope as part of the repairs.

Network Rail said: “Detailed geotechnical and aerial surveys of the affected area have now been completed, allowing engineers to fully understand the extent of the repairs needed to reopen the railway.

“Floodwater washed the track bed out from beneath the line and engineers will have to replace thousands of tonnes of lost material to rebuild the supporting slope before they can repair the track itself.

“A final timetable will be confirmed in the coming days.”

In England, ferry passengers heading to Dover were delayed outside the port for up to five hours while tug boats tried to guide them to the dock.

The fastest UK wind speeds were recorded in Wales.

Mumbles Head in south Wales saw gusts reaching 64mph on Saturday, followed by 58mph recorded in Aberdaron and 56mph at Pembrey Sands.

Forecasters said there was no sign of last month’s heat returning, with temperatures expected to remain around 16-17C in Edinburgh and Glasgow this week, and 15-16C in Aberdeen and Inverness.

Meteorologist Helen Roberts said: “It does look like remaining unsettled and changeable right through most of the next seven days.”