Eyewitness describes watching women 'cling on for dear life' in Scottish Borders flood

An eyewitness has told ITV News how he saw two women "clinging on for dear life" during a flood which saw one of them lose their life.

Colin Kerr witnessed the incident - which claimed the life of a 55-year-old woman - from his bedroom window in Walkerburn on New Year's Eve.

He said: "At about ten past midnight, I saw them parking up and thought they were coming over to see the Scottish Power guy at the substation.

"I saw them stopping to speak to him and just assumed that they were there to relieve him.

"I went back to my bed then the next thing I had the police at my door wondering what was going on and how many people were missing.

"It was then I realised that it was the two women that I seen that were coming across."

Colin Kerr witness the incident from his bedroom window in Walkerburn on New Year's Eve. Credit: ITV Border

It was then, Colin says, that a helicopter, fire engine and ambulance arrived to find the whole valley flooded.

"It was coming up to the bridge and the road - it must have been horrendous for the emergency services that were here," he said.

Despite their arrival, he says it was around an hour and a half before the women could be rescued.

He continued: "I could hear the people trapped from the other side.

"You can appreciate the amount of water that was coming across the road it was about a foot and a half to two feet deep and it must have been coming down at a heck of a rate because we got a thunderous noise when it was coming over here.

"They were clinging onto the wind sock for dear life, screaming for help and nobody could get to them."

"Everyone is shocked, it is not something you want to experience, ever. It must have been terrible for the ladies."

Police were called to reports of people within flood waters at Walkerburn in the Scottish Borders at around 12:20am on 31 December. Credit: ITV Border

Police Scotland spokesperson said: "Around 12:20am on Saturday 31 December 2022, police were called to reports of people within flood waters at Walkerburn, Scottish Borders. 

"Two women were rescued by the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. 

"Sadly one of the women, 55, died at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh on Monday, 2 January, 2023.

"A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal."

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