Implementation of the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009: report to the Scottish Parliament

Progress of work being carried out through the implementaion of the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Act 2009.

Storm Desmond and Storm Frank, December 2015

Whilst there have been many flooding events over the last couple of years the winter of 2015/16 saw record flooding in many places, notably during Storm Desmond (5-6 Dec 2015) and Storm Frank (30 December 2015).

The scale of flooding that occurred in December 2015 and January 2016 was exceptional in terms of intensity and the fact it was so widespread. December 2015 was the wettest on record in Scotland and the wettest calendar month overall in the UK since records began in 1910.

Out of a total of 408 SEPA river gauging stations nationally, at least 50 measured record levels in December-January. Totals at many gauges for the first 7 days of January were up to 350% of the long-term average for the whole of the month.

In 1 month alone, between early December 2015 and early January 2016, SEPA issued a total of 942 Flood Alerts and Warnings to communities at risk, including the first Severe Flood Warnings ever issued by the Floodline direct warning service. Over the same period, SEPA's Floodline website received over 700,000 "hits", with a peak of 135,000 on 30 December during Storm Frank.

During that period local councils, emergency services and other responders worked tirelessly to minimise the impact on communities, ensure the safety of people and help local areas recover.

In light of the exceptional circumstances the Scottish Government provided over £16m emergency funding in response to the flooding.

The support package provided in January 2016 was a response to the exceptional events at the time and it is not anticipated that it would be an automatic response to any future flooding events.


Email: Gordon Robertson

Back to top