Desperate search as person 'swept away' in river during torrential rain and heavy flooding in Scotland

18 November 2022, 19:12

Flooding has broken out across north east Scotland
Flooding has broken out across north east Scotland. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

A scramble to find a person who was swept away in a river during flooding in Scotland is under way.

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Police and emergency workers rushed to the River Don in Aberdeenshire after the country was battered by rain and floods.

Police Scotland said: "Emergency services are currently in attendance at the River Don, near Monymusk, following a report of concern for a person in the water, which was received around 3.05pm on Friday, 18 November, 2022."

A helicopter was circling the area as flooding levels rose to their the highest since Storm Frank in early 2016.

The Met Office issued an amber warning for rain across the region, which was extended until 9pm, along with five severe flood alerts.

Residents have been told to make sure their property is protected from rising water and avoid doing anything that could put themselves in danger.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) said: "Take action now. Stay away from flood water and do not take unnecessary risks.

Angus was among the parts to be hit by floods
Angus was among the parts to be hit by floods. Picture: Alamy

"Remain vigilant and remember, it is your responsibility to take actions which help protect yourself and your property."

Rests centres opened across Aberdeenshire for anyone who cannot stay in their homes. More than a month's worth of rain fell in Charr overnight – totalling 140 millimetres.

Power cuts were also reported in places including Inverurie, Kintore, Stonehaven, Portlethen and Hatton of Fintray, bringing down broadband internet.

Read more: Weather warnings as Britain to be battered by strong wind, floods and first snow of autumn

Elsewhere, some flooding was seen in Edinburgh, with the Crewe Toll roundabout in the city's west submerged.

The rail line between Monstrose and Laurencekirk was shut because of flooding, and services between Dundee and Aberdeen, Aberdeen and Inverness, Perth and Inverness and Inverness and Wick were called off.

Vincent Fitzsimons, flood duty manager for Sepa, said: "Heavy and persistent rain overnight has led to significant increases in river levels across the east of Scotland.

Heavy rainfall has caused flooding and power cuts across north east Scotland
Heavy rainfall has caused flooding and power cuts across north east Scotland. Picture: Alamy

"We have seen almost a month's worth of rain in some parts already this week and we are expecting around the same again over the course of Friday and Saturday in parts of north east Scotland.

"The highest risk is to riverside communities in parts of Aberdeenshire and Angus, with Severe Flood Warnings already issued.

"The worst impacts will occur between early Friday afternoon and early Saturday morning. We are working 24/7 with the Met Office and with information from Sepa's gauge network to review the flood predictions for these communities and others. This will continue until the risk is over."