Flash floods bring chaos to Cupar
TORRENTIAL rain brought flash flooding to Cupar on Monday morning, trapping customers in shops and blocking roads in and out of the town.
The first rumbles of thunder were heard at around 10.30 a.m. and by 11 a.m. the torrential rain started — and didn't stop for an hour.
Fire appliances were needed to pump pools of water out from the Crossgate, and shops all along the Bonnygate were flooded as the speed of the downpour caught many by surprise.
Water had to be pumped from WH Smith in Crossgate where some customers were stranded on an upper level and had be carried down by staff.
Across the road at Couper Carpets the water caused extensive damage as it poured through the shop before firefighters managed to pump the water down Steeles Close.
Store manager Alan Couper said: "We've had flooding before but never to this extent — it's gone right through to the back of the store. The whole shop is going to need redone now."
On Bonnygate, the north side of the street was worst affected as large pools of water collected and drains were blocked by rubbish from floating bins.
A number of businesses were angry that the situation was made worse by motorists who continued to drive along the road, causing surges of water to pour into premises along the busy street.
Ron Kidd, of Johnston Kidd Architects, was also unhappy that the police did not force the traffic to stop before reaching affected areas.
He said: "I phoned the police and asked for the road to be closed, but nothing was done and cars kept driving through causing waves to come in through the shops.
"What I think of those motorists is unprintable."
At the Ceramic Experience, also in Bonny-gate, around 30 customers were trapped when the flooding blocked the back and front of the building.
"It all happened extremely quickly," said owner Richard Brough.
"It was up to the door and the next minute it just started pouring into the store.
"We had some children in at the time and had to take them upstairs to the chemist's office space because the back lane was flooded as well.
A number of local people came forward to try and help out as the flooding got worse.
Paul Tumilty and with his friends Edward Brex and James McAvoy tried to stop the traffic coming down the street and clear the bins when they seen what was happening.
He said: "I saw the water coming down from the church and then the whole place was flooded.
"We tried to get the cars to stop going down the street, but some of them just ignored us and one of them ended up getting stuck so we pushed him out and into the car park."
"We were having to get lorries to do u-turns."
Jane Gallacher, manager of the Lighthouse Cafe, said: "It was very sudden. I phoned the police just after 11 a.m. to try and stop the traffic because at that point the water was only up to the pavement, but every time a car went passed it made it worse.
"The water would have stayed at the door if it hadn't been for the cars coming through."
"We were full at the time and we had a number of elderly customers and a few youngsters as well. The children were very scared."
Jo Paton, owner of Clear Concept on the Bonnygate, said: "Every car and lorry went passed too fast.
"I phoned the police and was told they were monitoring the situation on CCTV, but if they had been out here slowing the traffic down it wouldn't have been nearly as bad."
Bonkers Playbarn in Moathill Road was extensively damaged after rainwater came in through the roof.
All of the children were safely evacuated, but the premises are likely to be closed for six weeks.
The A916 to Ceres and the A914 to Glenrothes were both closed on Monday afternoon following the downpour, leaving the A91 as the only road open to motorists travelling in and out of Cupar.
Full coverage of the flooding and more pictures in this week's Fife Herald.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Kirkcaldy
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 7 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: South west
Temperature: 9 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 17 mph
Wind direction: South west