Long-standing flooding problems at a north-east village could be addressed in a new study.
Aberdeenshire Council has announced plans to undertake an extensive investigation into flooding at Stirling Village, on the edge of Boddam.
The probe will be the first stage of a major flood protection scheme aimed at protecting two homes which have been swamped by rainwater several times in recent years.
Local authority bosses have now put contracts for the £10,000 study out to tender.
The survey will look at the state of existing sewers and drains which seem unable to cope with excess water flowing from a nearby field during bouts of torrential rainfall.
A council spokesman said: “This ground investigation has been designed to provide geotechnical information in order to enable outline proposals for flood defence measures to be determined and their locations and design optimised.”
Problems in Boddam are thought to have started when a new sewage system was built in 1999. At the same time, a playing field was raised to make it level with the adjacent A90 Peterhead-Aberdeen road.
Families living in the affected area said they have been forced out of their homes four times in the last 12 years.
The last major flood happened just days before Christmas 2012.
The study is part of a £325,000 package of measures aimed at tackling flooding blackspots across the north-east corner.
In the Banffshire area, around £50,000 will be splashed out on alleviation measures at Fordyce, which was affected by flooding in 2010.
Coastal protection work is also being carried out at Sandend, near Portsoy, at a cost of £45,000.
As well as work at Boddam, measures in the Buchan area include £10,000 worth of sea wall repairs at Almanythie in Peterhead.
The contract for the Boddam survey work is likely to be awarded early next month.