23 July 2019
Richard Brown, Flood Duty Manager for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), said:
“The Met Office has forecast that heavy rain will fall during thunderstorms moving from the South overnight tonight and fading out on Wednesday morning in the North. In response SEPA has issued regional Flood Alerts highlighting the risk of localised flooding on Wednesday morning. These Alerts cover the whole of mainland Scotland and Orkney.
“Thunderstorms are localised but intense, they can begin suddenly with little warning, and could impact anywhere in Scotland. This makes them hard to forecast and is why we have regional Flood Alerts, which cover the possibility of flooding anywhere within a wider area than our more specific river and coastal Flood Warnings. It’s far less likely flooding will be caused by larger rivers this week, so a Flood Alert may be the only advance notice you have of potential flooding in an area where you live, work, or travel through.
“Many places may miss the heaviest showers, but this type of rainfall means that some areas could be hit hard by intense downpours whereas other areas nearby, even a mile up the road, will be unscathed. Where these thunderstorms coincide with built up areas or transport routes there could be significant disruption due to surface water flooding. This could include flooding of low-lying land and roads and difficult driving conditions.
“I’d like to emphasise that this kind of flooding can happen anywhere and not just beside streams or rivers. It occurs wherever local drainage gets overwhelmed by the sheer volume of rainfall in a very short time. This unfortunately can result in property flooding but it is very difficult to forecast accurately where this may happen.
“The best thing you can do is be prepared in advance, especially if you are going to be out and about. If you need more information please go to the SEPA website floodline.sepa.org.uk/floodupdates or dial Floodline on 0345 988 1188.
“We continue to work closely with Scotland’s flood preparation and response partners to ensure they have the latest updates and would encourage members of the public to remain vigilant, especially in areas susceptible to flooding.”