STORM HENRY: Travel disruption

Tips for driving during floods
Tips for driving during floods

The Scottish Government Resilience Room (SGoRR) has been opened to deal with the effects of Storm Henry, and it is closely monitoring events following the Met Office’s Amber weather warning for wind this afternoon into Tuesday morning.

The warning covers much of Scotland including the Borders regions and could lead to some disruption on the transport network.

Currently there are restrictions on some bridges, with the Forth Road Bridge, where winds over 80mph have been recorded, now closed to all vehicles.

Rail services are also seeing changes to normal timetables, with some reductions to evening services in particular.

Drivers are being advised that spray from surface water may cause some difficult driving conditions.

The gale force and severe gale force winds that have been forecasted could also have impacts on some utilities providers, including power supplies and telecoms.

Details of the weather alerts are available at: http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/public/weather/warnings.

Minister for Transport and Islands, Derek Mackay, said: “This latest period of unsettled weather is likely to cause familiar problems for travellers across the country with disruption to ferry and rail services likely.

“The gale force winds that are forecast are also likely to make travelling conditions particularly difficult for high-sided vehicles and we have already seen restrictions and evens some full closures of bridges today, with further disruption probable.

“Our Multi-Agency Response Team, based at the National Traffic Scotland Control Centre which has been in operation throughout the weekend will remain in place to monitor events and respond as required. We will also be deploying increased numbers of support vehicles to help keep the network clear where possible.

“Travellers are advised to take care in difficult conditions and allow extra time for their journeys. People should continue to check radio reports, visit the Traffic Scotland website or twitter feed, check with their transport operator, and take the latest police advice before setting off.

“High winds can also cause disruption to utilities like power and telecoms and key responder organisations across Scotland, including councils, utilities and blue light services, are well used to dealing with severe weather events such as these forecast.

“We have ensured that they have put in place the necessary planning and response arrangements to deal with any impacts as quickly and effectively as possible, nevertheless, people should try to ensure that they are prepared, including checking on the elderly and vulnerable.”

Pascal Lardet, SEPA’s Hydrology Duty Manager, said: “We expect small watercourses and rivers to respond throughout the week, with minor disruption likely across the north west. Impacts may include localised flooding to low lying land, roads and isolated properties.”