Thousands of homes remain without power after Storm Otto swept across the country, but engineers have been out “since first light“ restoring electricity supplies.
While most will see their supplies returned on Saturday, others won’t have faults affecting them fixed until potentially as late as Sunday night.
Winds as high as 80mph were recorded across parts of north and north-east Scotland on Friday, and thousands of homes were left without power.
Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) Distribution said that, as of 10am on Saturday, electricity supplies had been successfully restored to more than 41,000 properties – with around 2,500 still cut off.
Mark Rough, operations director at SSEN Distribution, said: “Our teams have made further progress late last night and early this morning restoring the remaining customers still off supply following the impacts of Storm Otto.
“Having now assessed the majority of those faults that are still to be repaired, we are confident the majority of customers impacted will be restored today and expect everyone still off supply to be restored by tomorrow evening at the latest.”
On Friday, Mr Rough said teams had made “excellent progress” despite the extreme weather conditions.
SSEN said additional support had been drafted in from network operators and contractors across the country.
The areas affected are mainly concentrated in Aberdeenshire, including parts of Longside, Mauld, Insch, as well as rural Morray and pockets of customers across the Highlands.
SSEN said mobile food vans had been deployed to the main areas still off supply, and will begin serving food again from 8am on Saturday. Those will be at:
- Cruden Bay (Main Street Bay)
- Huntly (Car Park at Market Muir)
- Aberchirder (Car Park at the Square)
- Hatton (Car Park beside the Village Hall)
- Insch (Outside the Church)
- Mintlaw (Macbi Community Hub Car Park)
- Maud (Market Street outside the Social Club)
- Kennethmont (Clatt Village Hall Car Park)
The Met Office had issued yellow weather warnings for wind covering the whole of Scotland and a stretch of north and north-east England, running from Sheffield to the Scottish border, which expired early on Friday afternoon.
Meanwhile, schools in some parts of Scotland were closed due to the conditions, with the Highlands and Aberdeenshire among the areas affected.
In Angus, schools are closed for the mid-term break, but the council tweeted that the roof of Burnside Primary School in Carnoustie had been damaged by the high winds and the school will remain closed to pupils next week.
Aberdeenshire Council warned of several road closures and said that some schools were shut, while several GP practices were operating emergency services only as they have no power.
Rail services were also affected due to the storm, with ScotRail implementing an emergency timetable.
Police Scotland urged drivers to take “extra care”.
A yellow warning for snow and ice has been issued from 11pm on Friday night until 9am on Saturday.
The warning covers parts of Central Scotland, Tayside and Fife, Grampian, the Highlands and Western Isles and Strathclyde.
The roof of one Angus school was blown off by the winds, with Angus Council tweeting: “All schools are closed today and Monday for the mid-term break and we’ll update Burnside Primary School families after we’ve assessed the impact of Storm Otto.”
ScotRail has implemented an emergency timetable.
The operator said on Twitter: “For the latest service information, please refer to our app or Journey Check, it has the same info that we do.
“Services across much of the country are likely to be delayed and may have to be cancelled/revised.”
TransPennine Express warned customers to check their route before travelling, adding that trains between Berwick-upon-Tweed and Edinburgh will move at reduced speeds in response to the weather.
It added: “Some roads and bridges could close and motorists should be aware of flying debris or obstructions.”
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