Flooding at Hassendean near Hawick

Flooding at Hassendean near Hawick
Two bridges have been washed away in Scotland after a major incident was declared to evacuate 500 properties from flooding.

Residents in Hawick were forced to leave their homes as rising water levels caused the Teviot to burst its banks in parts of the Scottish Borders town.

Network Rail Scotland said that with extremely heavy rain forecast across Scotland on Friday, speed restrictions have been put in place, causing disruption on the West Coast Mainline between Glasgow and Carlisle.

Two road bridges spanning the River Annan, had been washed away north of the railway with trains unable to pass over a viaduct, closing the Dumfries to Carlisle line until further notice, Network Rail Scotland said.

A major incident was stood down in Hawick in the Scottish Borders, with home evacuations halted and residents allowed to return home after 500 properties were feared to be at risk.

The Scottish Borders Council said: "The evacuation of residents has now ceased and members of the public are being advised that they are safe to return to their homes."

People in the most at-risk areas in Hawick were warned to prepare to flee at short notice overnight amid fears that hundreds of properties could be under threat.

Trees are submerged as the River Teviot burst
Trees are submerged as the River Teviot burst its banks in the Scottish town of Hawick
NHS Borders also closed the Teviot Health Centre and all services that operate within the facility as the council opened the Teviotdale Leisure Centre to provide assistance to those displaced by the risk of flooding.

Several schools in Dumfries and Galloway were closed after flooding blocked roads, and the major incident was stood down on Friday afternoon.

Elsewhere, around 40 properties flooded in Cumbria and Cockermouth Mountain Rescue also had to rescue two tourists and their dog from chest-high floodwater.