Scotland on high flood alert as Storm Babet set to bring deluge of rain

Strong winds and heavy rain is expected, with many rail services suspended

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The UK's Met Office has issued an “exceptional red warning” ahead of Storm Babet, with severe rainfall and high winds forecast.

Parts of eastern Scotland, such as Brechin, Forfar and Kirriemuir, are set for a deluge of rain from 6pm on Thursday until noon on Friday.

Met Office chief meteorologist Jason Kelly said 100 to 150mm of rain could fall in certain regions, with isolated areas set for about 200 to 250mm of rain and heavy flooding expected.

“Confidence has increased in the chances of considerable impacts from rainfall in parts of the east of Scotland from Storm Babet, which has resulted in the escalation to the red warning,” he said.

The storm is forecast to bring strong easterly winds, with gusts expected to exceed 112kph in parts of eastern Scotland, with an amber wind warning in place for much of the country.

Other parts of Scotland are also bracing for heavy rainfall, with 70 to 250mm forecast.

A Met Office amber warning is also in place for eastern and central parts of the country, with rainfall of 70 to 100mm forecast. Some areas could face 150 to 200mm in 24 hours.

Network Rail Scotland announced route closures and disruption to its services ahead of the storm. Those in red weather warning areas have been urged not to travel.

Traffic Scotland also warned that “travel should be avoided unless absolutely essential”.

David Morgan, the flood duty manager for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, advised the public to be prepared for flooding, heavy rain and high winds.

Babet causes havoc in Ireland

Storm Babet has already hit parts of Ireland, causing severe flooding.

Areas such as Cork and its surrounding county were among the worst affected.

In Midleton, Cork, roads became impassable and the military was called to assist travellers.

The fire brigade in Skibbereen spent several hours pumping water out of flooded areas.

Despite their efforts, the water levels remain high, with areas experiencing a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours.

Updated: October 20, 2023, 7:47 AM