Unusually for me, a long-winded Blip, from sunnier, drier times and of some of my team, who contributed to the amazing work done over the last few days during Storm Frank.
At times of significant flooding like this I'm especially proud to work with some of the most dedicated people you can imagine. Our 24/7 team delivers flood forecasting, warning, guidance and information services for Scotland, 365 days a year. All year round an immense amount of work goes on behind the scenes you'll never see. The training, planning, exercising, education, awareness-raising, trying new technology, systems & service development...
All doing the very best possible to help others plan, prepare and protect.
And that's what we're all about. Helping people. We do so in an increasingly challenging economic, political and media (esp. social!) environment, where it's easy and often popular to criticize blithely and without consequence. A short period of applause for the emergency response, then a prolonged and often savage, ignorant torrent of criticism ensues, because not every solitary person has got exactly what they wanted/needed, precisely when they needed it. Yes, of course mistakes happen and no, the absolutely ideal levels of protection and support will never be in place for everyone, all the time. That's utterly impossible, always has been, always will be, under immense situational and increasing resource pressures.
But we continue to deliver under all these circumstances, not just because it's our duty, but because we care. Most of those I work alongside - in my own org and our partners in the public and charitable sector - have a strong commitment to contributing to our community, locally and nationally. Recognition isn't important, but being part of a society which values that ethos is
That's why I'm proud of what we do, and equally so of my colleagues and friends in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Ok, diatribe over, you're unlikely to hear anything of this nature from me again but if you want to see some decent pics of the last 24 hours up here, have a look at this Beeb page, it ain't bad!