Flooding outlook - Friday 19 February 2021

  19 February 2021

Janine Hensman, SEPA's Duty Flooding Manager said:

“The ongoing thaw of snow coupled with heavy rain falling on wet catchments is likely to cause flooding of land, roads and isolated properties over the next few days. This may cause disruption to travel and is expected to largely affect southern, central and north eastern areas of the country. 

“Regional Flood Alerts and local Flood Warnings have been issued and people living and working in affected areas are advised to plan their journeys and consider the steps they need to take now to be prepared. You can stay up to date with regional Flood Alerts and local Flood Warnings at sepa.org.uk/floodupdates

“SEPA is working 24/7 to monitor rainfall and river levels and is in close contact with the Met Office and other partners to review the forecasts, which are combined with local expertise from all regions of Scotland to understand and present the flooding risk. We would encourage members of the public to remain vigilant, especially in isolated, low lying agricultural areas susceptible to flooding. The most up-to-date information is always available on our website."

Staying informed

  • All SEPA’s Alerts and Warnings are available on our website at sepa.org.uk/floodupdates
  • Floodline is always the most up-to-date information – with any new flood updates available as soon as they are issued.
  • Advice on what you can do to prepare for flooding can be found at floodlinescotland.org.uk

Be prepared and stay safe

  • Check Floodline – visit sepa.org.uk/floodupdates
  • Don’t walk through flood water – 15cm of fast flowing water could be enough to knock you off your feet and hazards can be hidden under the water.
  • Drive with care, and do not travel through deep fast flowing water. It only takes 30cm of fast flowing water to move an average family sized car.
  • If you are walking beside rivers be extra careful of wet footpaths and possibly small watercourses in spate.
  • Please consider deploying flooding protection products if required. 

What’s the difference between a Flood Alert and a Flood Warning?

We use forecast weather information provided by the Met Office combined with our own observation of rainfall and river levels and advanced hydrological modelling to provide advance warning of flooding.

  • Regional Flood Alerts are early advice that flooding is possible across a wider geographical area. The purpose of the Alerts is to make people aware of the risk of flooding and be prepared. We normally issue them 12 to 24 hours in advance of the possibility of flooding.
  • Flood Warnings are more locally specific and are issued for areas where we have gauges on rivers to measure the exact river height. They are issued at shorter notice when we are more certain that a specific area will be affected.

Notes to editors

  • The areas of concern for potential flooding impacts include; Argyll and Bute; Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City; Ayrshire and Arran; West Central Scotland; Dumfries and Galloway; and the Scottish Borders. 
  • Rainfall and river levels data are available to SEPA internally but cannot be exported automatically to the web pages to share with the public at the moment as a result of the cyber-attack. Our teams are working as quickly as possible to restore wider services, including public access to river level data, and we’ll continue to provide weekly updates on the status of our services at sepa.org.uk/servicestatus.
  • For the latest information on the Cyber Attack please visit – Cyber attack | Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)