Scotland weather: More flooding as yellow warning for thuderstorms remains in place

Scotland has been swamped by further heavy flooding, just as farmers are warning of the worst drought "in a generation."
Flooding was reported over the weekendFlooding was reported over the weekend
Flooding was reported over the weekend

Railway tunnels flooded almost to their roof as five feet of water inundated the line between Dalmuir and Hyndland in Glasgow on Saturday night.

In Inverness, a chivalrous driver of a stranded BMW elected to carry his girlfriend from the vehicle after it was engulfed by water on the city’s Clachnaharry Road.

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But despite the summer downpours, Scotland has had just received 38 per cent of its summer rainfall so far, a period defined by June, July and August. Having already passed the first week of the final summer month, totals just now should be climbing above 70 per cent.

This contrasts sharply with southern England, where this summer has been unseasonably wet. The City of London has already received 143 per cent of its summer rain, Surrey 126 per cent and the Isle of Wight a staggering 176 per cent.

Here, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency has warned about low water levels in the country’s ground and rivers, following a particularly dry spring and summer. The government quango reported that south west Scotland had its driest July in over 100 years.

It said only a “significant and sustained period of rainfall” will improve the arid condition which are now evident across much of the country.

SEPA was considering suspending the licence to draw water belonging to Girvan Early Growers, a farming co-operative in Ayrshire, as a result of “continuous dry weather” but stopped at the last minute as a result of recent rainfall.

Andrew Young, Chairman of Girvan Early Growers said:“Over the last 30 years, we have invested as heavily in irrigation equipment as we could to try and make best use of the water available for our high value crops.

“However, this year, despite the investment and support to avoid this situation, we are struggling as the drought is the most severe we have witnessed in a generation.”

Terry A’Hearn, SEPA’s chief executive added:”We are very much living through more extreme weather patterns – and one does not balance out the other.

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“This is just one of the many consequences of climate change Scotland is facing, and it is becoming more common.”

Scotrail said that many services failed to run yesterday, not because of the weather but due to strike action by the RMT union.

Two CalMac crossings between Ardrossan and Brodick on Arran were cancelled due to a COVID-19 incident.

Yellow warnings for thunderstorms extend into their fourth day on Monday for an area covering Glasgow and Dumfries in the west and Edinburgh and Dundee in the east.

Up to three inches of rain (80mm) could fall in the space of a few hours, resulting in flooding and difficult driving conditions on the nation’s roads. The yellow ‘be aware’ warning period begins at noon and ends at 9pm.

Met Office forecaster Becky Mitchell explained: “These thunderstorms will be very slow moving, which is why rainfall totals could be very high if you catch one. Yet, a few miles away, it could be completely dry.

“Tuesday should provide a brief respite from the rain, looking like the best day of the week with temperatures between 21 and 22C (70-72F).”

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