Flood warning system goes live

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A NEW early warning system has been launched to give people in Angus and Aberdeenshire the best chance of protecting their properties from flooding.

The free warnings will be sent directly to registered mobile ‘phones and landlines, allowing residents at risk of river or coastal flooding to take action at the earliest possible opportunity.

Operated by the Scottish Environment Protection agency (SEPA), the Scotland-wide Floodline direct warning service was launched on Monday by environment and climate change minister Roseanna Cunningham.

She described the new service, which has been funded by the Scottish Government, as an “essential tool” and urged residents and businesses to sign up to the scheme.

It will replace SEPA’s old recorded telephone and website facility. Anyone who lives in, works or travels through areas at risk of flooding can sign up and receive details on the likelihood and timing of any potential flooding threat.

This will ensure everyone can benefit from SEPA’s extensive flood forecasting expertise and monitoring networks.

Service improvements include new easy-to-understand flood warning symbols which make it clear what action people should take, and when; the creation of more than 200 smaller, local flood warning areas to provide more meaningful and targeted information and new Floodline quick dial codes allowing users to quickly access the information relevant to them.

Ms Cunningham said: “I want as many people as possible to sign up to this free service and improve their resilience to flooding. This is not just about homes as the benefits apply equally to businesses and we have recently seen that they can be disrupted by flooding too.

“Coupled with the new Scottish Flood Forecasting Service, which gives emergency responders better and earlier information, Floodline means that the people of Scotland will benefit directly from the £9 million we’ve invested in these innovative approaches.”

Professor James Curran, SEPA’s director of science and strategy, said the improvements are “a huge step forward” in terms of flood warning for Scotland.

He continued: “Making it easier for people to help themselves is a key part to this, and signing-up to Floodline’s direct warning service can be done online, by phone or by filling-in a registration form. In fact we’re sending thousands of these directly to properties in flood warning areas, so look out for these valuable envelopes, use their contents and if you receive a flood warning message – take action.”

Resident and businesses can sign up now by visiting www.floodlinescotland.org.uk/signup.