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Travel warning after amber alert for heavy rain – BBC News

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Police have urged for people to travel only if necessary in parts of Scotland covered by an amber weather warning for heavy rain.

The warning is in place from 03:00 Saturday until 06:00 Sunday.

ScotRail said services would be suspended on a number of routes in areas covered by the amber warning.

This includes the West Highland line, Helensburgh Central/Balloch to Dalmuir and the Highland mainline between Perth and Inverness.

The suspension will be in place from Saturday until Sunday morning.

On the roads, traffic using the A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful is being diverted on to the Old Military Road as a precaution because of the heavy rain.

A yellow “be aware” warning for heavy and persistent rain is also in place for almost all of mainland Scotland, as well as Skye and the Inner Hebrides.

Video caption, The Met Office has issued an amber weather warning for heavy rain for parts of Scotland.

The Met Office said flooding and fast-flowing rivers and streams could pose a risk to life and damage property.

It said 80-100mm of rain could be expected in most areas, with as much as 150-180mm possible for the wettest spots.

Justice secretary and minister for resilience Angela Constance said: “The potential impacts of this amber warning for rain are severe, so people need to plan ahead and pay close attention to all travel advice, which is likely to be updated over the course of the weekend.

“Flood alerts are also in place and residents in affected areas should stay clear of any floodwater and consider making a flood plan for their homes or business.”

Police Scotland also urged people to follow the amber warning.

Ch Supt Hilary Sloan, head of road policing, said: “Our advice is to plan ahead and consider if your journey is really necessary or if it can be delayed until conditions improve.

“Stopping distances can be at least double on wet roads compared to dry conditions, and spray can reduce driver visibility.

“If you need to travel, please drive to the conditions and take extra time for your journey.”

Met Office chief meteorologist Neil Armstrong said prolonged heavy rain was expected to cause widespread disruption for much of Scotland.

He said: “While Saturday into Sunday will be widely very wet for Scotland, the heaviest, most disruptive, rain is expected in western and central Scotland.”

The worst of the wet weather is expected to clear during Sunday morning.

It said affected areas included Angus, Ayrshire, Argyll and Bute, and parts of the Highlands, north-east Scotland and the Scottish Borders.

Flood duty manager Ruth Ellis said: “This is a major rainfall event as we are expecting to see significant prolonged heavy rain throughout Saturday across the southern Highlands and western Central Belt, with further heavy rain in the north on Sunday.

“We’re likely to see extensive river and surface water flooding impacts, including property flooding and widespread transport disruption.”

Network Rail Scotland said train speeds may need to be reduced on some lines for safety reasons during the bad weather.

The Mountain Weather Information Service has warned of very wet conditions in western Scotland, with streams likely to be in spate at times and not possible to cross.

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