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Storm Frank: Power cuts and flooding as Scotland battered

media captionFootage showed a mobile home smashing into a bridge on the River Dee in Ballater, Aberdeenshire

Power cuts, widespread flooding and landslips have been reported as Storm Frank continues to batter Scotland.

Thousands of homes are without power in the north east, Argyll, the Borders, Highlands, Hebrides and Northern Isles.

Ten adults and two children were winched to safety by a rescue helicopter after a Stagecoach bus became trapped near Dailly, Ayrshire.

Two severe flood warnings (possible danger to life) have been issued for Whitesands in Dumfries and in Peebles.

Across Scotland on Wednesday evening over 70 flood warnings and 12 alerts remained in force.

image copyrightJoanne Clanahan
image captionEmegergency services rescued 11 people trapped on a bus in Dailly
image copyrightRoss McCronie
image captionA rescue helicopter over the stranded bus in Dailly
image copyrightScottish Fire and Rescue Service
media captionPhyllis Young, who was on a bus which was evacuated amid the flooding, described the ordeal

The emergency services worked throughout the afternoon to rescue 12 people from the Stagecoach bus which became stranded in deep water near Dailly cemetery.

Police Scotland said 10 adults and two children - a boy aged seven and a five-year-old girl - were airlifted from the bus.

They were taken to Dailly community centre where they were being assessed by medical staff.

One of the rescued passengers, Phyllis Young, later told BBC Scotland it had been a terrifying ordeal.

She said: "The water was in the bus. It was coming up and up.

"It got to the window, there was big waves. You could see the current. It was very, very scary."

The passengers were forced to move the rear of the bus as the front section of the bus was covered with water.

media captionResidents in Peebles were seen desperately trying to stem the flow of floodwaters

Major road closures

  • In Aberdeenshire the A93 is closed for 70 miles;
  • A923 Blairgowrie Coupar Angus road closed
  • Landslip closes A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful in Argyll, leading to a 50-mile diversion;
  • About 300 tonnes of material washed down hillside, trapping two cars;
  • A85 closed both ways due to flooding between A82 (Crianlarich) and A827 (Lix Toll);
  • A76 Kilmarnock to Dumfries road closed at New Cumnock;
  • A745 Dalbeattie Castle Douglas road closed

Latest updates on BBC Travel

image copyrightReuters
image captionCars submerged in floodwater on the M74 near Abington in South Lanarkshire
image copyrightBEAR NW Trunk Roads
image captionTwo cars were trapped as hundreds of tonnes of debris crashed onto the road at the Rest and Be Thankful
image copyrightMichael O'Neil
image captionResidents in Port Glasgow have been stranded in their homes
image copyrightScotRail
image captionStorm surge affecting the line at Saltcoats

A landslip has closed the A83 in Argyll at the Rest and Be Thankful and a flood closed the M74 in South Lanarkshire.

The Scottish government's resilience committee has met to assess the response to what environment minister Aileen McLeod described as a "very serious situation".

She said: "The Scottish government's resilience team is closely monitoring the situation which is still developing as persistent rain continues to fall onto saturated ground - and is expected to deteriorate further as river levels continue to rise, even after the rain has stopped.

"It is imperative that people look for and take heed of the latest warnings, information and advice from Sepa, Police Scotland and Traffic Scotland.

"In particular, consider whether you need to travel and take all possible precautions to stay safe, particularly in the worst-affected areas."

Train Services hit

  • Highland main line closed all day due to flooding;
  • Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh: Severe disruption due to a landslip between Garve and Achnasheen;
  • Glasgow/Edinburgh to Inverness: Severe disruption due to flooding;
  • Glasgow to Shotts: Severe disruption due to damage to the overhead electric wires;
  • Glasgow to Ardrossan/Ayr/Largs: Severe disruption due to flooding;
  • Glasgow to Stranraer: Severe disruption due to flooding
image copyrightScotRail
image captionFlooded road outside Dumbarton Central railway station
image copyrightNetwork Rail
image captionThere was severe overhead line damage at Kirknewton in West Lothian

Some of the worst flooding hit Ballater in Aberdeenshire, where a caravan was spotted being carried down the River Dee.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service issued advice for those who find themselves without power or experiencing flooding. They urged people to be extra vigilant when using candles and gas heaters.

Vincent Fitzsimons, from Sepa, said: "The worst of the rainfall has largely passed but larger rivers will take some time to react as the water moves down towards the sea.

"Some are reacting now but in areas like Dumfries the worst of the flooding is expected to coincide with high tide mid-afternoon today.

"Rivers further east will take longer to respond. Areas like Callander, Perth, Deeside and Spey will continue to see rising levels throughout the day and some will not peak until the 31st.

Mr Fitzsimons said that "the situation should start to improve for everyone" from Friday.

Power Cuts

  • About 6,000 homes in Scotland without power;
  • Main areas affected in the north east, Argyll, the Borders, Highlands, Hebrides and Northern Isles;
  • SSE said faults were caused by wind damage and trees or other debris on the lines;
  • Electricity supplies turned off to 200 customers in Newton Stewart at request of fire service;
image copyrightGail Cantlie
image captionNewton Stewart was left without power and phone lines
image copyrightSepa
image captionMap showing flood warnings and flood alerts in place in Scotland

Morven Smith, head of project resilience at power firm SSE Hydro, said engineers were making good progress in restoring supplies

She said: "We've restored over 29,000 customers' power since Storm Frank hit. We currently still have about 6,000 customers without power.

"Access has been a particular issue for us today. We have to take account of safety of the public and our engineers before we can restore power there."

Forecasters at Meteogroup said Braemar in Aberdeenshire has been the wettest place in the Scotland since midnight after receiving 64mm of rain up to 14:00 on Wednesday.

Tyndrum in Stirlingshire received 58mm and 39mm fell in Eskdalemuir in Dumfries and Galloway.

Wettest places

  • Braemar, Aberdeenshire wettest place in the Scotland after receiving 64mm of rain between midnight and 14:00;
  • Tyndrum in the Stirling Council area received 58mm;
  • 39mm fell in Eskdalemuir, Dumfries and Galloway;
  • Glasgow was the wettest city with 43mm of rainfall;
  • Just 9mm was recorded in Edinburgh.

(Statistics from Forecasters at Meteogroup)

image copyrightAvrumi Sandler
image captionSome main and side roads in Ballater are completely under water
image captionSide streets in Dumfries were seriously affected from early afternoon

Flooding incidents / Evacuations

  • Hundreds of people evacuated from homes in Ballater, Aberdeenshire, due to flooding and power outage;
  • Homes evacuated in Newton Stewart and Carsphairn in Dumfries and Galloway due to flooding;
  • Gourock Ropework building in Port Glasgow surrounded by floodwater with some residents unable to leave their homes;
  • Cars abandoned after dozens of roads flooded across Scotland;
  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) issues over 90 flood warnings and 14 alerts;
  • "Severe flooding - danger to life" warnings issued for Whitesands in Dumfries and Galloway and The Tweed in Peebles.
media captionFurther warnings are in force as Storm Frank threatens more heavy rain and strong winds.

The coastguard advised vessel owners to think twice before venturing out in the expected storms and told photographers to avoid putting themselves in danger.

The extreme weather is expected to clear in time for Thursday's Hogmanay celebrations.

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