Police weather update

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NO SIGNIFICANT weather-related incidents have been reported to the emergency services as the rain continues to fall in Tayside.

It has been raining across the region for several hours now and the forecast is for it to continue well into Friday (Dec 20). Already, there is a build up of surface water on roads across Angus, Dundee and Perth and Kinross. However, no significant flooding has been reported so far.

Nevertheless, with the miserable weather set to sit over the area until Friday afternoon at least, emergency services, local authorities and their partners are urging people to be aware of the situation and prepared for any potential disruption.

The Met Office confirms that persistent heavy rain, driven by strong south-easterly winds, will continue throughout Thursday and into Friday. Snow is expected to accumulate above 500-600 metres and the attendant winds could lead to blizzard conditions. Rainfall totals of 20-30mm are expected widely and in excess of 50mm in some parts.

There is a potential risk of river flooding as the rain persists and the overall conditions are expected to result in large waves – potentially up to five metres along the coast line.

Emergency Services, the Local Authorities, along with SEPA and their other partner agencies are working closely together as they continue to monitor the situation to ensure they are ready to respond effectively to any challenges.

Council workers in Angus, Dundee and Perth and Kinross have been deployed overnight and through this morning to check gullies, ditches and culverts and distribute flood warning signs and sandbags in preparation for any potential issues.

Once again, Tayside Police would appeal to drivers to take the utmost care in what are challenging and difficult driving conditions.

Allow plenty of time for your journey, reduce your speed and drive according to the conditions. This includes keeping a safe distance from the vehicle in front and using dipped headlights where appropriate.

Large puddles and pools of water are likely to collection roads in both rural and urban areas. As such, drivers should slow down when approaching standing water to avoid risks of aqua planing. If you do experience aquaplaning, hold the steering wheel lightly and lift off the throttle until the tyres regain grip. Always be considerate of nearby pedestrians.

Tayside Police offers drivers the following information and advice in mind -

Increase the gap between your vehicle and the one in front.

On slippery roads it can take up to 10 times longer to stop.

Reduce your speed and allow more time to slow down. Stop by decelerating earlier, rather than rely on braking alone.

Use dipped headlights so you can see and be seen.

If visibility is extremely poor (less than 100 metres visibility) then use fog lights, but switch them off whenever conditions improve or they will cause undue dazzle, which is an offence.

Take care on flooded roads. The deepest water is usually nearest the kerb, select first gear and move forward immediately to avoid stalling the engine, while maintaining high engine revs. Test your brakes after passing through the water.

On flood affected roads, if you vehicle loses grip, or aquaplanes, take your foot off the accelerator to slow down.

Avoid standing water if at all possible.

If you break down in heavy rain. Do not prop the bonnet open while you wait for assistance to arrive. The engine will be more difficult to start again if the electrics are rain-soaked.

People are also advised to make use of traffic information websites such as www.trafficscotland.org

There are also regular updates on AA Roadwatch

Further Information on the kind of disruption that might be experienced is available at http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/guide/weather/severe-weather-advice.

The full Alerts, with maps of the area affected, can be viewed on hazard manager or on website http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/public/weather/warnings/.

People should also be aware of local television and radio bulletins for updates on the latest weather and travel information. Details on any council and trunk road closures can be found at http://trafficscotland.org.

Local authority websites carry further useful information in relation to various services and people should also log on to the Safer Scotland Ready For Winter? website on www.readyscotland.org for more valuable information.

Floodline is Scotland’s 24-hour flooding information service, operated by SEPA

Online and by phone, it provides up to date information on river and coastal flood risk across the country including what Flood Warnings or Alerts are in force.

You can receive these directly to your phone, free of charge, by registering here: http://floodline.sepa.org.uk/floodingsignup

It is also a source of advice and information on flood risk, minimising the effect that flooding can have on your home or business, and what to do before, during and after a flood.

Tel: 0845 988 1188 Website: http://www.sepa.org.uk/flooding