Residents urged to have say in flood risk

Ballater suffered the impact of Storm Frank
Ballater suffered the impact of Storm Frank

Residents in flood-hit Aberdeenshire communities are being urged to take part in a consultation on potentially vulnerable areas (PVAs) for Scotland.

Local people are being asked for their views on areas deemed at risk of flooding now or in the future.

The exercise is part of a national flood risk assessment process and will help government agencies to set priorities for which areas of the country would benefit most from prevention work.

Ballater, Kemnay and Stonehaven are among communities to have suffered from severe flooding in recent years.

Local politicians Andrew Bowie, MP for West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine, and Alexander Burnett, MSP for Aberdeenshire West, are encouraging as many people as possible to have their say.

Mr Bowie said: “Nobody living in places like Ballater or Kemnay will forget the devastating floods that hit the region in the aftermath of Storm Frank. The impact on local residents, businesses and property can be enormous.”

He added: “It is important for local residents to get involved in this consultation on potentially vulnerable areas.

“This work will inform forward planning by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) to try and prevent or mitigate against future floods.”

Mr Burnett added: “This is an important process that local residents should take the time to feed into.

“Kemnay, for example, is not currently designated as a PVA.

“The last time this was looked at by SEPA in 2011, properties were not deemed to be at risk. Clearly, that situation changed quite dramatically a few years later.

“It is important that the authorities get this right going forward and I hope that as many people as possible will have their say on this. The survey can be completed online at any time.”

The consultation runs from May 1 to July 31.

SEPA will publish a summary of responses through its website and will take account of views received and submit proposals to Scottish Ministers later this year.

Ministers will formally designate PVAs which will be published in December.

PVAs are where significant flood risk exists or is likely to occur in the future.

They are part of the National Flood Risk Assessment process.

Further details from https://consultation.sepa.org.uk/evidence-and-flooding/pvas2018/