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Highland Council response to extreme weather

5th December 2013

Today (5 December 2013) 56 schools, 7 Service Points and council offices were closed due to lack of power, bad weather or loss of water.

There were issues with the Councils website and school closures online which are being investigated. Parents were still able to access the School Closures Telephone Line with their school PIN numbers to gain information about the closures.

Due to roof damage, Inverness High School was closed this morning and pupils sent home at around 11:15am for their safety. The school will remain closed on Friday 6 December.

Panels became detached from Rose Street car park and were overhanging onto Rose Street (on the north side of the building) and the street has been cordoned off for safety. The Council is trying to arrange contractors to assess and secure the damaged panels.

Service Points closed include: Lochcarron, Ullapool, Helmsdale, Muir of Ord, Fort August, Mallaig, and Lairg. Lochcarron and Ullapool subsequently re-opened when power was reinstated.

The main Council Offices in Dingwall were closed this afternoon due to loss of power and heating.

Richard Evans, The Highland Councils Acting Head of Road and Community Works said: Since 5am this morning we have been responding to calls outs regarding fallen trees and debris across roads and our staff have been working to clear roads and keep traffic moving.

In Wester Ross a polythene roof was blown off one of our salt stores, and our Ullapool depot received damage to its roof and doors. Oykel Bridge in Sutherland was closed due to flooding.

We have staff out clearing fallen trees and debris on the B852 Dores Foyers, A862 Inverness Beauly, B970 Aviemore Kingussie, U1313 Bellsgrove-Polloch (Kinlochan) Lochaber ; and many side roads have also been affected by debris.

In expectation of predicted high tides and possible storm surge sandbags were installed on the banks of the River Ness this morning, and yesterday, spare sandbags were supplied by the Council to residents along the river side. Staff are also keeping a watching brief on the Caol area of Fort William for possible flood risk to that area. The River Ness flooded its banks in the centre of Inverness and the council is working with contractors Morgan Sindall to increase the sandbagging of the area.

The following schools were closed:

Acharacle Primary
Achiltibuie Primary
Ardnamurchan High
Ardross Primary
Avoch Primary
Ben Wyvis Primary
Canisbay Primary
Cannich Bridge Primary
Croy Primary
Culbokie Primary
Dingwall Academy
Dingwall Primary
Drummond School
Duror Primary
Farr High School
Farr Primary School, Bettyhill
Ferintosh Primary
Fortrose Academy
Foyers Primary
Invergarry Primary
Inverness High School
Kilmuir Primary
Kiltearn Primary
Lady Lovat
Loch Duich
Lochinver Primary
Mallaig PS
Mallaig HS
Macdiarmid Primary
Marybank Primary
Mulbuie Primary
Munlochy Primary
Newtonmore Primary
Plockton PS
Plockton HS
Stoer Primary
Strathconon Primary
Strathdearn Primary
Stratherrick Primary
Strathgarve Primary
Strathpeffer Primary
Teanassie Primary
Tongue Primary
Upper Achintore


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