Driver who was swept by floods named

23-year-old Michael named as vic­tim af­ter car swept away in burn

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - FRONT PAGE - BY JOSHUA KING

A 23-year-old man who died when the 4x4 he was driv­ing was swept into flood waters has been named by po­lice as Michael Atkin­son.

It is un­der­stood he was try­ing to ford the Burn of Boyne near Til­ly­naught on Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon but lost con­trol of his ve­hi­cle in the swollen river.

A 23-year-old who died af­ter his car was swept away dur­ing heavy flood­ing was vis­it­ing rel­a­tives when the tragedy hap­pened.

Po­lice yes­ter­day named Michael Atkin­son as the vic­tim of Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon’s in­ci­dent.

It is un­der­stood the Banff man was at­tempt­ing to cross the usu­ally shal­low burn not far from the old sta­tion house at Til­ly­naught to reach a field when the 4x4 was swept away. Rel­a­tives were too up­set to speak last night.

Emer­gency crews from the po­lice, am­bu­lance, fire bri­gade, Coast­guard and lifeboat ser­vices worked for hours to first find and then re­cover the car which was dragged more than a hun­dred yards down­stream.

A farm­worker of­fered as­sis­tance with his trac­tor to free the ve­hi­cle, but de­clined to com­ment about his role in the search and res­cue ef­fort.

Last night, a po­lice spokes­woman said: “We can con­firm the man who sadly died fol­low­ing the car go­ing into water at Til­ly­naught, Port­soy, was Michael Atkin­son, 23, of Banff. Po­lice had been called in re­la­tion to a con­cern for a man in a ve­hi­cle shortly af­ter 4pm on Wed­nes­day.

“The ve­hi­cle was re­cov- ered at around 5.30pm and the body of a man re­cov­ered shortly af­ter.” She added that there are no ap­par­ent sus­pi­cious cir­cum­stances but that, “as is stan­dard”, a re­port will be submitted to the procu­ra­tor fis­cal.

A spokesman for the Mac­duff lifeboat which sup­ported the res­cue op­er­a­tion warned that it only takes four or five inches of fast-flow­ing water to move a car. He said: “Af­ter yes­ter­day’s in­ci­dent of a car be­ing swept away by flood waters near Port­soy and the very sad con­clu­sion to this, our thoughts are with the fam­ily and friends of the de­ceased.”

Banff coun­cil­lor John Cox has of­fered his con­do­lences to Mr Atkin­son’s loved ones. He said: “It’s a tragedy for his fam­ily and friends. All we can do is think about them at this hope­less time. We as a com­mu­nity ex­press our deep­est con­do­lences.”

Dozens of mes­sages for Mr Atkin­son have poured in on so­cial me­dia.

CROSS­ING POINT: The usu­ally shal­low burn where it is un­der­stood Michael Atkin­son tried to cross to a nearby field in his 4x4 car

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