Torrential downpour floods capital 126



By Paul Thornton

PARTS of Edinburgh have been hit by metre-high flooding after heavy rain fell over night.

Residents in the Cameron Toll area of the city were amongst the worst affected with water entering basements and submerging gardens.

And the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) released several flood warnings yesterday following torrential downpours.

Seven bodies of waters including Leith, the River Tyne and the River Earn were the subject of flood warnings, at one point three of these were listed as “severe”.

A further 11 areas, including Edinburgh, West Central Scotland, Clackmannanshire and Fife were told that flooding was a possibility.

The A720 Edinburgh bypass was closed westbound from Straiton to Dreghorn junctions and some eastbound lanes were closed.

Downpours in the Lothians saw one street – Old Dalkeith Road – flowing like a river when the Inch Park area was heavily flooded.

At least one couple in the street – the Crawfords – have been flooded out of their home while others face a massive clean-up job after 75ml of rain (about a month’s average) fell in just 36 hours in parts of capital.

Jim Crawford said: “We heard the knock at the door at about 2am and began putting our possessions on top of wardrobes and chests to keep them dry.

“It wasn’t flooded at that point but it was rising very quickly and we had to get out and stay at a family member’s home.”

When the 60-year-old and his wife, Mary, returned to their converted lodge home, they found it about one metre deep in flood water with council workers stemming the flow with pumps and sand bags.

Accountant Jim added: “It is an absolute nightmare, we are shocked at how quickly it filled up and it has ruined the inside of our home.”

Mary, 59, said they were covered for flood damage and would be staying with family until their insurers arranged accommodation.

She said the couple had moved into the house in 2000 but had not been told that it had flooded just a couple of years before then.

Another couple, just across the street, have managed to stay in their home but admit they face a massive clean-up – and they don’t know where to start.

Accountant Jennifer Mackay said: “We have never been in a situation like this before – we just don’t know where you begin to clean this up.

“We are quite lucky that our door is raised slightly and the water didn’t enter so we can stay here.

“But we think it is under the floorboards and could be causing damage.”

Jennifer said she and partner David McCabe, both 47, had only bought their house two months ago and, as far as they knew, it had never flooded before.

A Met Office spokeswoman said that last month Scotland saw an average of 109ml of rain, about 120 per cent the expected level.

She said today would see some bright spells before heavy rain returned for the weekend.

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