Severe weather warnings issued for eastern and northern Scotland
The Met Office has issued red and amber weather warnings for parts of Scotland as Storm Babet is expected to bring heavy rain and strong winds from Thursday to Saturday. The storm could cause flooding, landslides, power cuts, and travel disruption.
The red warning, which means danger to life, covers parts of eastern Scotland, including Edinburgh, Dundee, Perth, and Aberdeen. The amber warning, which means be prepared, covers central and northern Scotland, including Glasgow, Stirling, Inverness, and Fort William.
The Met Office advises people to avoid travelling in the affected areas and to follow the advice of local authorities.
ScotRail suspends services on some routes in the north and northeast
ScotRail has announced that it will withdraw train services on some routes in the north and northeast of the country due to the storm. The suspension will start from Thursday morning and last until early Saturday, depending on the weather conditions and any repair work needed.
The affected routes are:
- Glasgow Queen Street and Aberdeen / Inverness
- Edinburgh Waverley and Aberdeen / Inverness
Customers on these routes are advised not to travel as no alternative transport is available. Customers whose journey has been cancelled or disrupted can travel one day before or two days after the date on their ticket or apply for a fee-free refund.
Speed restrictions in place on other routes across the network
Other routes across the network will also be impacted by precautionary speed restrictions, meaning services may be subject to delay or cancellation. Customers are advised to check their journey before travelling on the ScotRail website, mobile app, or social media channels.
ScotRail service delivery director David Simpson said: “We know the impact that the withdrawal of some train services will have on customers, but our first priority is always to ensure the safety of our staff and customers. This is a necessary step to ensure everyone’s safety during the severe weather.”
He added: “In order to keep our customers and staff safe, speed restrictions will be in place as a precautionary measure on other routes in Scotland, which will mean longer journey times.”
Storm Babet could break rainfall records in Scotland
According to the Met Office, Storm Babet could bring up to 200mm of rain in some areas over 48 hours, which is more than the average rainfall for October. This could break the record for the wettest day in Scotland, which was set on 30 October 2009 when 156.9mm of rain fell at Skye Alltdearg House.
The storm could also bring gusts of up to 70mph in some coastal and exposed areas, which could cause damage to buildings and trees.
Met Office chief meteorologist Steve Ramsdale said: “Storm Babet will bring an unsettled spell of weather for many parts of Scotland with very heavy rain across eastern areas most at risk of flooding. Impacts could include flooding affecting homes and businesses, difficult driving conditions and road closures.”
He added: “As well as heavy rain, strong winds will be an additional hazard with potential for some blizzard conditions across high ground.”
How long will Storm Babet last?
Storm Babet is expected to move slowly across Scotland from Thursday to Saturday, bringing a prolonged period of wet and windy weather. The storm is named after a French word meaning “little girl” or “doll”.
The storm is part of a low-pressure system that originated over the Atlantic Ocean and has been influenced by the remnants of Hurricane Sam.
The Met Office says that the storm will gradually weaken as it moves eastwards towards Scandinavia by Sunday. However, unsettled conditions will continue across Scotland through next week with further spells of rain and wind.