Seven airlifted in Scotland due to heavy floods

Published on : Tuesday, December 31, 2013

flood_at_lesmahagow-300x210The New Year will begin on a stormy note in the UK after seven people had to be airlifted to safety when heavy rain caused flooding in Scotland.

The rescued people contained four children who were rescued from a farmhouse near Closeburn in Thornhill, Dumfries and Galloway, by a Royal Navy helicopter after rain forced families to be evacuated from dozens of homes and caused major road disruption.

Around 40 houses in Kirkconnel, Dumfries and Galloway, were evacuated, as were 25 in Dumfries after the river Nith burst its banks, flooding the Whitesands area.

Many roads such as A76 at Kirkconnel closed and flooding on the A74 and A75 were closed due to heavy rain. A landslide on the A7 just south of Langholm closed the road for a short while.

Police advised motorists to travel only if necessary and to check routes before setting off. Some of the heaviest rain was in Threave, Kirkcudbrightshire, which saw 66mm (2.6in) of rain in the 20 hours up until 2pm, while Eskdalemuir in Dumfriesshire had 65mm.

The Met Office issuing a severe weather warning for rain on New Year’s Day. Southern England and western Scotland have more misery in store.

The latest severe weather is set to push in from the Atlantic, crossing the UK from west to east, and it is feared there could be localised flooding in the south-west and south-east of England.

The Environment Agencies have already issued flood warnings. Councils are preparing for the worst, with emergency accommodation lined up in case people are forced to leave their homes

There is a big band of rain that will bring persistent rain to most parts of the UK through the New Year day. It will be a pretty wet and windy day said the Met Office spokesman Dan Williams.

The exposed areas of the western coast and some of the south coast will receive wind speed of 50 to 60mph. There could be a fair amount of rain in the south and south-west of England, with 10-20mm falling fairly widely, and up to 40mm in coast areas.

A flood warning has been indicated by the Environment Agency which stated there will be teams on the ground “around the clock” operating pumping stations, issuing flood warnings and checking flood banks, walls and barriers.

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