Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Flood warnings as amber weather alert downgraded

Sandbags at the Tyne Pic: Steven Godden
Image caption Sandbags have been put down along the Tyne river at The Nungate Bridge in Haddington in East Lothian

A Met Office weather warning for south east Scotland has been downgraded from amber to yellow.

Heavy rain in Edinburgh, Midlothian, East Lothian and the Scottish Borders, sparked fears of flooding and "hazardous" conditions for drivers.

The alert has now been reduced to a less severe yellow warning - but there are now warnings of potential flooding in East Lothian and the Borders.

Debris has been seen washing down the River Tyne in Haddington.

Sandbags were being put down at Biel Burn in West Barns outside Dunbar and at The Nungate Bridge in Haddington as the river continued to rise, with its peak estimated for 13:00.

Image caption Sandbags beside the Tyne river at The Nungate Bridge

Mike Shakespeare, who lives in Gifford, said he hoped the Tyne would not burst its banks.

He said: "It's not quite as high yet as it's been. It's been over the wall before but we still have a lot of water to come down from the hills so you don't know what is going to happen in the next 12 hours or so."

Di Shakespeare added: "There was constant rain here for the whole night last night, it's never stopped.

"We have Velux windows and it was just battering on them all night.

"There are homes and a restaurant that will be affected if the water level of the river does go over the wall."

The area covered by the Met Office yellow alert stretches from Edinburgh, down the east coast to Scarborough.

Another yellow warning covers parts of Wales, Liverpool and Manchester.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has issued four flood warnings which cover Haddington and three locations in the Scottish Borders.

Mark Franklin, Sepa flood duty manager said: "Persistent and heavy rainfall has resulted in a risk of river and surface water flooding in south-east Scotland this morning and into this afternoon.

Image copyright Jill MacKay
Image caption Large pieces of debris are being washed down the River Tyne in Haddington

"The rainfall is heaviest over high ground in East Lothian and eastern areas of the Scottish Borders.

"This may result in travel disruption and flooding of properties and infrastructure in these areas."

He said the rain was expected to spread westwards later in the day, becoming lighter on Thursday afternoon and evening.

"We encourage members of the public to remain vigilant and take care when travelling in south-east Scotland due to the risk of flooding impacts," he added.

Meanwhile, two sailors were rescued from a yacht which ran into difficulty in bad weather off Shetland.

The crew members on the Saint Ali were flown to Sumburgh by the coastguard helicopter. Their yacht is being towed to Norway by a cargo boat.

Image caption BBC weather watcher Marlyn took this picture at St Abbs

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