Homes have second night without power after Storm Gerrit

tree fallen
Image caption,SSEN crews were working to restore power after storm damage near Fort Augustus

About 750 homes had another night without power after Storm Gerrit brought snow and floods to Scotland.

Power company SSEN said it had managed to restore supplies to more than 45,000 properties, with residents in the north east and Shetland worst affected.

Of those, about 750 were brought back on supply between midnight and 01:00 – leaving the same amount still without power.

SSEN said it was confident they would be reconnected later on Friday.

It comes after houses in Cupar, Fife, were flooded while drivers on the A9 in the Highlands were stranded by snow.

Elsewhere in the UK, homes were damaged after a “localised tornado” tore through Tameside in Greater Manchester.

And National Grid said 36,000 properties were temporarily left without electricity in Ceredigion after part of its network suffered a lightning strike.

Graeme Keddie, SSEN’s director of corporate affairs, told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme: “Our teams in the field have made a tremendous effort in restoring power to customers affected by Storm Gerrit while battling some very tough weather conditions.

“Using the resource levels we had built up before the storm, we’re confident that we can reconnect these remaining customers throughout today.”

Meanwhile, three men died after a 4×4 vehicle went into the River Esk near Glaisdale in North Yorkshire, an area badly affected by flooding.

In Scotland, most of the affected rail lines have now reopened. The services affected had included key routes between Aberdeen, Dundee and Inverness.

Image caption,Network Rail said its teams had worked round the clock to reopen routes

Network Rail Scotland said teams had worked round the clock to reopen routes.

The line between Cupar and Dundee had been closed due to a landslip, while a fallen telegraph pole near Helmsdale had blocked the line between Tain and Wick.

Trains between Dumfries and Kilmarnock are expected to resume until later on Friday after of landslip left debris on the tracks near Sanquhar.

There was also flooding in the Whitesands area of Dumfries and on the A96 at Huntly, while trees have fallen across the A82 south of Invergarry.

Meanwhile six people were rescued from vehicles stuck in flood water in Banchory, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said. No injuries were reported.

SSEN said about 14,000 homes were left without power overnight on Wednesday.

Shetland roof
Image caption,High winds damaged the roof of the Shetland Hotel in Lerwick

More than 2,000 were in Shetland, while the rest were spread over the Highlands, Argyll, Orkney, Tayside and central Scotland and the north east.

Welfare vans serving hot food and drink were set up in affected areas.

SSEN said customers should visit the Power Track website.

Mr Keddie insisted the firm had made “big improvements” on its main network and customer communications after thousands were left without power for a week following Storm Arwen in 2021.

Image caption,The A9 at Scrabster, Caithness, was blocked by a landslide

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning for much of Scotland on Wednesday.

A warning covering Shetland was extended until 06:00 on Thursday, with Lerwick registering its strongest wind gust in seven years at 83mph.

A major incident was declared by Highland Council as the A9 was shut for hours due to heavy snow, leaving drivers trapped in their vehicles near the Pass of Drumochter.

Caledonian Sleeper services, to and from Aberdeen, Inverness and Fort William, were cancelled on Wednesday night while the British Transport Police was called out to reports that a train had been struck by a tree near Broughty Ferry station.

Pictures showed extensive damage to the driver’s cab.

Th Rail Accident Investigation Branch said it was “in the process of gathering information” and the incident would be reviewed in the coming days.

Shadhida Khalid of Ali's Discount Store
Image caption,Mohamed Khalid of Ali’s Discount Store in Cupar
food truck fort augustus
Image caption,Welfare vans serving hot food were set up in Fort Augustus and other affected areas

In Cupar, Mohamed Khalid of Ali’s Discount Store estimated flooding had caused £150,000 of damage to his shop.

“Everything has been turned upside down really in the shop,” he told BBC Scotland.

“We don’t know where to begin with the clean up procedure.”

David Duguid, Conservative MP for Banff and Buchan, raised concerns that an amber alert should have been in place.

“The effect of the weather in north east Scotland in last 24 hours has felt far more serious than ‘yellow’,” he posted on X, formerly Twitter. “Many of my constituents asking why this wasn’t amber.”

A Met Office spokesperson told BBC Scotland News that the warning was not raised to amber because “the likelihood of disruption on a county scale remained too low to escalate until a very short lead time”.

They added: “Once impacts were observed the benefit of escalation would have been very limited as emergency services were already responding to the situation.

“We will review the efficiency of the warnings as part of this event as usual in the coming days.”

Travellers are facing disruption as Storm Gerrit hits Scotland

Power went off in the village of Tarland, Aberdeenshire, from about 10:00 on Wednesday morning.

Anne Keith told BBC Scotland News that residents knew to stock up on supplies following Storm Arwen.

“We were all ready,” she said. “Candles to the ready, power packs to the ready. So it wasn’t too bad.”

Alick Bergman said he had a “rough night” after a power cut forced him and his children to shelter at his parents’ house.

But he had no complaints about the Met Office warning system.

“Weather is a fickle beast,” he said.

“Sometimes they’ll put out an amber warning and it doesn’t amount to much. Sometimes you don’t get a warning at all and it’s pretty horrendous. They do the best they can.”

flooding in Cupar
Image caption,Residents were rescued from homes in Cupar, Fife, on Wednesday

Stein Connelly, head of transport resilience at Transport Scotland, said: “The weather has improved and the Met Office warnings have ended, but people may still encounter difficult driving conditions due to surface water and flooding.

“We continue to ask people to plan ahead, to drive appropriately and to take care out on the road network.”

CalMac said some ferry services on Thursday were at risk of disruption or cancellation at short notice.

The operator said the latest information on delays and disruption to other routes was available on the CalMac website.

NorthLink services across the Pentland Firth to Orkney were also at risk of disruption.

First Minister Humza Yousaf said the Scottish government’s resilience operation had been activated on Wednesday evening.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *