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14 December 2016, 15:53
Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham has said the government is "committed to doing everything we can'' to protect communities from flood damage.
Ms Cunningham was speaking on a visit to the £20 million Almondbank flood prevention scheme in Perth and Kinross, marking a year since the wettest December on record led to heavy floods in many parts of Scotland.
She said: "Last year we saw the devastating effects of exceptional flooding with storms battering our communities and businesses.
"It's impossible to predict what this winter holds but I want to provide communities with an assurance that we are committed to doing everything we can to protect them from damage.
"Our strategy is giving local authorities the certainty and the financial backing they need to deliver the actions in their flood risk management plans which can help individuals, businesses and communities.
"While we're showing leadership and boosting our local authorities, it's crucial that members of the public also understand flood risk and take the necessary actions to protect themselves, their property or their businesses.''
She urged people to check flood risk on the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) Floodline website.
Sepa flood unit manager Pascal Lardet said: "We've had a relatively dry winter so far but last December saw flooding create a lot of unseasonal misery for many.
"It is important to remember that whether you are planning a quiet Christmas at home or expect to travel further afield over the festive period, we can all be affected by flooding - but you can take action now to reduce the impact which flooding can have on your life.''
The government and Cosla have committed to a joint £42 million-a-year plan for the next decade helping more than 10,000 families in flood prone communities.
The Almondbank scheme, being built by Perth and Kinross Council, is a series of flood defences aimed at protecting homes and businesses from the risk of River Almondbank and the East Pow Burn flooding.