Homes evacuated in Aberdeenshire as river bursts its banks

A bottom floor flat close to the River Don has been submerged in water containing oil and petrol from a neighbouring works yard. Credit: ITV News/Debi Edward

Scores of homes have been evacuated in Aberdeenshire after the River Don rose to record levels and burst its banks.

Dozens of people in in Inverurie, Port Elphinstone and Ellon were forced into temporary accommodation as swollen rivers, which reached 5.6m at their height, sent flood waters racing down the village streets.

ITV News Scotland correspondent Debi Edward reports:

The River Ythan also overflowed as emergency services worked to rescue residents in what was described as an "escalating" situation, ITV News Scotland Correspondent Debi Edward reported.

Teams from the Scottish Fire Service and the coastguard mounted an operation to rescue residents from 38 properties in Port Elphinstone.

A further 18 homes were evacuated from the Bruce Crescent and Meadows areas of Ellon as the Ythan rose through the night.

Residents from the Meadows Care Home in Huntly were among those evacuated to alternative accommodation amid the flooding.

The care home, which reportedly houses 42 residents, was among several in Aberdeen to have been evacuated because of flooding concern.

People were put up in rest centres while a number of local hotels also opened their doors to flooding victims for free and police organised food and water drops with Tesco unable to complete deliveries in the region.

The River Don's top height of 5.6m (18.37ft) was its highest level for 45 years while the River Ythan stood at 4.4m (14.4ft) at its peak, 1.2m (3.93ft) above 1983's previous record level.

The flooding in the north-east also brought major travel disruption, with roads closed and trains and flights cancelled in Aberdeen and across the surrounding region.

Repairs to flood-damage sections of the Aberdeen airport were completed before safety checks allowed flights to resume after a night and morning of cancelled services.

Elderly residents from the Meadows Care Home were among those evacuated amid the flooding. Credit: STV
A pensioner is helped onto a vehicle to take residents from the Meadows Care Home. Credit: STV

Residents in the city's Grandholm area were earlier urged to leave their homes amid fears the River Don will burst its banks there.

A police spokeswoman said: "The Grandholm and Millside areas have seen some flooding and roads are affected by surface water in Aberdeen city centre. There have been some advised evacuations."

Heavy rain in the past weeks has seen flooding across Scotland, forcing people from their homes and causing major travel disruption.

There has been little respite for the north east since the New Year when Storm Frank brought flooding to villages around the River Dee, with Ballater particularly badly hit.

A Met Office amber warning for heavy rain has now expired but has been replaced with a yellow warning for snow and ice for much of Scotland, Northern Ireland, north west and north east England.