FLOODS caused havoc across the Scottish Borders and East Lothian yesterday with flood warnings still in place today for many areas after the northern end of Storm Angus swept across the south-east of Scotland.

Though its impact varied in intensity across the UK, the worst affected areas were around the coasts and inland rivers and two people are known to have drowned, while Torness nuclear power station saw one of its two reactors shut down.

A 39-year-old woman was rescued from the sea off Kent but was found to be dead on arrival at hospital. In Wales, the search will resume this morning for Russell Sherwood from Bridgend, whose car has been spotted submerged in the River Ogmore, with the 69-year-old believed to be still inside the flooded vehicle.

Storm Angus caused other widespread disruption. Almost 150 ferry passengers travelling from the Republic of Ireland to Wales were forced to spend Monday night at sea due to the conditions and it is not known for certain whether the storm caused the shutdown of reactor 1 at Torness nuclear power station. The reactor was taken offline at about 9am, with operators EDF announcing on their website that the “unit automatically tripped due to seaweed at seawater intake”.

Reactors need large amounts of water in order to keep them cool, and to prevent them from overheating. Seawater for cooling is drawn into Torness and filtered, but when the filters are unable to deal with excessive seaweed, reactors are shut down as a safety precaution.

When a reactor was shut down in November 2013, stormy weather conditions had led to excessive seaweed coming into the filters and it is thought by local people that the same phenomenon has occurred again. Reactor 2 is functioning normally but reactor 1 is likely to be out of action for a week, according to EDF. EDF said there was no danger from the shutdown but did say that the automatic trip because of the seaweed was unusual.

Many roads in East Lothian and the Borders were flooded and only passable with care, and flood alerts were put in place for Haddington, Peebles, Greenlaw, Shiplaw and Jedburgh, though that latter warning was lifted last night after the Jed Water levels began to subside.

Tweeddale was particularly badly affected, with the tributaries of the Tweed reported to be very high.

The Lyne Water burst its banks, while Eddleston Water caused localised flooding. Chief Inspector Matthew Paden, local area commander for East Lothian, said: “This flood warning is a precautionary measure and we are advising to take appropriate action to mitigate any flooding. For the most up-to-date information, get in touch with Floodline immediately.”

Police Scotland asked that vulnerable family and neighbours should be accounted for, and anyone cleaning up after a flood is advised to wear protective gloves and boots, as well as eye protection.

They also warned that flood water should be avoided by pedestrians and motorists alike, and children should be discouraged from playing in or around flooded areas.

In general across Scotland, the wet weather was expected to be shortlived but was being replaced by freezing temperatures as night fell.

Met Office meteorologist Alex Deakin said: “An area of low pressure is still across the UK and feeding in showery rain across eastern Scotland which will slowly peter out. Overnight the low pressure moves away taking the showers with it, leaving clearer skies, however that brings frost. In rural areas we could get down to negative double-digits.”