Key work on the Aberdeen bypass has been postponed this weekend – due to a forecast for torrential rain and flooding across the north-east.
The Met Office has warned of a “prolonged” downpours throughout the whole of today, with motorists warned to expect flooding on local roads.
A yellow warning for rain was issued by the forecaster last night, prompting Transport Scotland to ditch scheduled work to the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR).
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency has also placed a flood alert on Aberdeen city and shire, warning of wet roads and overflowing burns.
Planned lane closures on the A944 Aberdeen to Alford road have been scrapped due to the forecast.
A contraflow was due to be put in place on the road near Kingswells from 8pm yesterday until 6am on Monday to allow workers to complete the westbound “tie-ins” for the AWPR.
Drivers were to be re-routed onto the new road whilst those travelling eastbound would have continued on the existing A944.
New dates for the work are still to be confirmed. But a Transport Scotland spokesman said the planned work had been “postponed for safety reasons” due to the heavy rain that was expected.
A Sepa spokesman added: “A flood alert has been issued for Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City.
“Heavy and persistent rain has been forecast for throughout the day on Saturday from late morning.
“This may cause minor flooding impacts from local surface water run-off and from small watercourses, especially in known trouble spots. Wet road surfaces and difficult driving conditions are expected.”
Last night, Aberdeen Met Office meteorologist, Stuart Brookes, said: “There will be rain coming in overnight, it is going to be right through to the late hours on Saturday, constant rain. There will be a prolonged spell of wet weather.
“There could be large puddles and localised flooding of between 20mm and 30mm (0.8in – 1.2in) in places. The warning is for the east of Scotland generally, it goes right as far down as Fife, Angus and the north-east.
“There has been an area of low pressure over the south of the UK, it is deciding to travel north and slowly at that.”
However, he added Sunday and Monday would bring brighter weather.
Another contraflow has been scheduled to be in place on the A944 from 8pm on Friday March 10 until Monday, March 13 at 6am, due to work at the site to allow for eastbound connections to be created.