Scores of homes have been evacuated in Aberdeenshire after the River Don burst its banks and the River Ythan threatened to overflow, while people in an area of Aberdeen were advised to leave their properties.
Teams from the Scottish Fire Service and the coastguard mounted an operation to rescue residents, some reported to be elderly, from 38 properties in Port Elphinstone, near Inverurie, as the swollen Don sent floodwaters racing down the streets.
A further 18 homes were evacuated from the Bruce Crescent and Meadows areas of Ellon as the Ythan rose through the night.
A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “The Don has burst its banks in a number of places in Port Elphinstone and there has been localised flooding across the area.
“Fire search and rescue lead on the evacuation with the coastguard assisting and police are on the scene.”
Motorists were advised to avoid making journeys in the area unless essential.
Heavy rain in the past weeks has seen flooding across Scotland, forcing people from their homes and causing major travel disruption.
Roads have been closed and trains and flights cancelled in Aberdeen and across the surrounding region as water levels reached record highs.
Residents in the city’s Grandholm area were urged to leave their homes amid fears the River Don will burst its banks there.
A police spokeswoman said: “The Grandholm and Millside areas have seen some flooding and roads are affected by surface water in Aberdeen city centre. There have been some advised evacuations.”
As well as Inverurie, Kintore on the Don has been badly hit by flooding, prompting a call for volunteers from the local council.
Police reported people stuck in their cars on flooded roads and the rail line between Aberdeen and Dundee has been suspended until at least lunchtime.
Flights were unable to arrive at Aberdeen Airport on Thursday night after “unprecedented rainfall” damaged a section of tarmac on the runway.
The airport said it hopes to resume normal service today but advised passengers to check with their airline before travelling to the airport.
A Met Office amber warning for heavy rain was due to expire this morning.
A yellow warning for snow and ice is also in place for much of Scotland, Northern Ireland, north west and north east England.
Scotland’s Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “The impact of this latest round of flooding is causing transport difficulties and putting properties at risk of flooding.
“The Scottish Government’s resilience committee is monitoring the situation very closely and we have discussed the unfolding events and work to mitigate the impacts and ensure the safety of people in local communities.”
Aberdeenshire has seen persistent rainfall since Storm Frank hit on December 30 and rivers were already swollen and ground saturated before the latest deluge.
Rest centres have been set up across the region for people who have been forced to leave their homes and more than 20 schools have been closed or partially closed due to the severe conditions.
The emergency services were called in to help pupils in Brechin return home from classes on Thursday.
Residents with private water supplies which may have been contaminated by flood water have been advised to use bottled water as a precaution.