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British Red Cross responds to flooding across Scotland

4 September 2009

FESS hovercraft© InfoThe British Red Cross is responding to flooding in Moray and Tayside, as heavy rain led to disruption across the north and east of Scotland.

The Red Cross in Moray has two boats and a hovercraft on standby to support Grampian Fire and Rescue Service and the police. Specially trained swift water rescue volunteers are also ready to respond.Red Cross operations director Ian Rideout said: "We have been mobilising our team since early this morning. We have trained volunteers in Elgin and at our centre in Aberdeen. The situation in Elgin is particularly serious, with residents being evacuated and rest centres already set up."

Heavy flood warning

He continued "We know that two major river systems are on heavy flood warning, and we are concerned about the potential impact on householders of the high tide later today. We have a significant team, with over 50 personnel and ten 4x4 vehicles as well as our water rescue boats, and we are on standby to help the emergency services wherever we are needed."

In Dundee, the Red Cross started receiving calls for support from the Tayside Fire and Rescue service early on Friday morning and the charity's specialist fire and emergency support service (FESS) was immediately put into action.

Donald Park, Red Cross service manager, said: "I couldn't believe that the first call we received was actually to the house of one of our own volunteers. Diane Dargie, who is the deputy leader of our fire and emergency service, woke to find her house flooded. We were called out at 9am and were on scene within minutes with our specially adapted vehicle to provide shelter, and emotional and practical support."

Diane Dargie said: "I first saw water on the ground floor at 7.30am. My first thought was that our dog had an accident in the night! My husband and I then realised there was a lot more water rising through the floorboards. My home is completely surrounded by water. The support from the Red Cross has been great, and they are helping me get through today. I am worried about tonight, and where we will stay, as I have five dogs and five ferrets that also need to be looked after!"

The Red Cross is continuing to respond to flood call outs in Dundee and the surrounding area.

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