Home bears the brunt of heavy rain

Many sand bags at the entrance to Cairnie Lodge on Sunday to avoid the home being flooded as it was the last time.
Many sand bags at the entrance to Cairnie Lodge on Sunday to avoid the home being flooded as it was the last time.

ARBROATH and the surrounding area escaped the worst of the disruption caused by the heavy rain over Saturday and Sunday but once again Cairnie Lodge Care Home, part of the troubled Southern Cross group, was flooded.

Police said on Monday that no local roads had been badly affected and no diversions were in place.

Southern Cross area manager Andrew Williamson paid glowing tribute to the efforts of Tayside Fire and Rescue’s Arbroath Fire Station team who, he said, were “absolutely phenomenal”.

The heavy rain began to take effect just after 1 a.m. on Saturday when water flowed down the hill from the Kirkton Road turn-off then down the brae into the grounds of Cairnie Lodge.

Mr Williamson stated: “The fire crew was called at about 1.35 a.m. and they began to try to divert the water using sandbags. In the home, the staff implemented the emergency procedure and they too tried to block the ingress of water using sandbags.

“However, by that time the damage was already done and about two inches of water lay over the ground floor. The main areas affected were the administration block, the dining room and the residents’ lounge, although we managed to prevent the water reaching the residents’ bedrooms.

“The firefighters were absolutely brilliant and laid a sandbag diversion further up the road to direct the water off the road and into a field. They left at about 8 a.m.”

Mr Williamson said that additional staff had been called in from Lunan Court Care Home in Arbroath and from Forfar and managers from all over Scotland were also involved.

He explained that most of Sunday was spent clearing up the mess.

He continued: “There was a disruption to the breakfast routine but by lunchtime things were pretty much back to normal and the dining room was back in operation by 5 p.m. on Sunday.”

This is not the first time Cairnie Lodge has been affected by localised flooding during exceptionally heavy rain. Mr Williamson explained: “The home sits in a natural bowl at the bottom of a hill and this certainly does not help.

“After the last inundation we put in additional storm drains and took measures that were accepted by our insurance company but this time around we will be having another look to see what else we can do.

“I have been in touch with both Angus Council and Scottish Water and we will put our heads together and see what we can come up with.”

Mr Williamson also paid tribute to staff members who were quick to combat the crisis and stressed that most residents looked upon the situation as an exciting interlude.”