The UK is braced for more heavy winds, rain and flooding on Thursday night after being hit by half a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours following a period of unseasonably warm weather, as the Met Office issued a “possible danger to life” warning for parts of Scotland.
The amber warning, which will cover part of eastern Scotland, will come into force from the early hours of Friday until 3pm.
Yellow warnings – a step down from amber – were issued throughout Thursday and for Friday across the UK, as flooded roads caused “treacherous” conditions for commuters and disruption on rail lines.
Some of the heaviest rain was expected in east Scotland, forecast to see the same amount over a 36-hour period as would be expected throughout an entire average November. A yellow weather warning of rain for the area will remain in force until 6pm on Friday.
A warning that some fast-flowing or deep flood water could cause a “danger to life” in Aberdeenshire and Angus and Perth was also issued by the Met Office.
As a result of the weather conditions, Aberdeen city council, which has cancelled its Christmas tree lights switch-on event due to the forecast, told residents in flood-prone areas to stock up on sandbags and other flood-prevention tools.
ScotRail have also limited train speed limits to 40mph, down from the usual 100mph, over a seven-mile section of track.
Craig Snell, a spokesperson for the Met Office, said: “The warning areas are where we are most concerned about the risk of flooding, but it doesn’t mean that the areas outside them are not going to see some pretty atrocious conditions.”
The Environment Agency had issued 26 flood warnings in England, which mean flooding is expected, and 102 flood alerts, meaning it is possible.
In West Sussex, the M23 was closed due to the heavy rain, and up to 20 cars were stuck in floodwater and had to be rescued on the A27 between Emsworth and Chichester.