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The Highland Council responds to the impact of severe weather

9th January 2015

THE Highland Council has been working with partners in other agencies to plan for the impact of the severe storms overnight and throughout today. Senior staff have been taking part in regional and local multi-agency meetings to ensure appropriate arrangements are in place and staff across the council have been working extremely hard to deal with the impacts of the weather and provide service continuity.

Due to the severe weather, power supplies, computer networks and some phone lines have been affected this morning. Most services have been restored, but there may be disruption continuing during the day at some sites due to power outage and telephony issues.

13 Service Points are currently closed due to loss of power. Service Point closures are now linked to the severe weather page on our website. http://www.highland.gov.uk/info/591/council_and_government/590/service_points_closed

The Service Centre has been extremely busy with high call volumes. As at 1pm today, the Centre had received 1315 calls. The normal call volume is around 1000 calls per day.

Around 98 schools were closed today, however we would expect that most schools will re-open as usual on Monday. Decisions on school closures are made locally by Head Teachers who assess local circumstances and conditions. Some structural damage is currently being assessed at Brora and Kyleachin schools.

Deputy Chief Executive Michelle Morris said: "As several thousand households are still without power, we are working with our partners to ensure vulnerable residents are cared for. We would also encourage people to look out for elderly or vulnerable neighbours who may be without heat or light.

"Many roads across the highlands continue to be affected by fallen trees and debris. Teams of staff have been working very hard, during the night and throughout the day, to clear branches and make the roads safe. The forecast is for further strong winds this evening and overnight, which may result in more trees and branches falling on roads.

“There is also expected to be snow at all levels tomorrow and Sunday with a yellow weather warning in place. Road conditions, therefore are likely to continue to be difficult and caution should be exercised when travelling."

The latest road report shows the following road closures:

· A838 near Merkland

· B9176 Struie Hill Road

· B9154 Daviot to Dalmagarry closed (trees at Moy Station)

· B9163 Black Isle - tree damage to the Newhall Burn bridge, between (Jemimaville and Balblair)

In addition there are minor road closures:

· Galcantray to Croy (Tree resting on building)

· C1242 Kilbeg/Ostag Tarskavaig road (culvert collapse).

 

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