VOLUNTEERS were called into action at the weekend in Tillicoultry once again after torrential rain led to flash flooding.

Members of the Tillicoultry, Devonside & Coalsnaughton Flood Group (Tideco) supported residents on Westbourne Avenue and worked with Clacks Council in a bid to prevent water entering homes there.

Gail Walker, co-ordinator at Tideco, told the Advertiser: “We know that there is a long-standing problem at Westbourne Avenue where flash flooding, which is what we witnessed [on Sunday] with torrential heavy rain, just overwhelms the system.

“Unfortunately for the residents of Westbourne Avenue it's a bit of a bottleneck and they end up with gallons and gallons of sewage water shooting out through every drainage point available and filling the road because it has nowhere else to go.

“For those properties that were really severely affected – it was right up to their steps or front doors and they couldn't actually leave their properties.”

Gail and the team are working closely with Clacks Council and have been approaching Scottish Water for a long-term solution to increase capacity in a bid to prevent a situation where homes get completely flooded during heavy downpours.

During the storm at the weekend, two core co-ordinators and several volunteers from Tideco sprung into action, deploying flood protection sacks, monitoring the situation for hours and keeping residents up to date.

“They did a really great job”, added Gail, who is also seeking to raise awareness about the items people flush down the toilet as some may be contributing to the issue on Westbourne Avenue.

It is understood previous flash flooding events brought out sewage debris which included various sanitary products.

Many of these items may be labelled as “flushable” by the manufacturer but do not necessarily break up properly, the co-ordinator – whose own house flooded in 2008 – explained.

Without criticising any residents, Gail is seeking to raise awareness.

She said: “If you get enough of those and heavy rain then it gets to a stage where you end up a sewer block and water supercharging into a street and this is what's happening at Westbourne Avenue.”

Gail is encouraging people to bag and bin items such as wet or face wipes, cotton buds and similar to help alleviate the pressure on the sewage system.

On its own website, Scottish Water is spreading the same message to householders, saying residents should follow the “Three Ps rule” and "only flush pee, poo and toilet paper".

The company says people should never put in the toilet any wipes, even if the pack claims “flushable”.