Rail chaos and road crashes hit commuters

The car left hanging over the verge is hauled to safety. Picture: STV
The car left hanging over the verge is hauled to safety. Picture: STV
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COMMUTERS faced traffic chaos after a signalling failure on a key train route was followed by road accidents and flooding.

Busy commuter services running between Edinburgh and Glasgow were delayed or cancelled throughout yesterday morning before returning to normal at around 1.30pm.

By the time the trains got to Linlithgow, they couldn’t have possibly squeezed another person on. There was plenty of frustration on the platform.

Commuter

Meanwhile, a five-car smash on the M9 saw rush-hour traffic temporarily blocked off between junction three to Linlithgow and junction two to Philpstoun – causing miles of tailbacks for drivers. Last night, police said one driver was in hospital following the incident.

And the upheaval continued within the city boundary, with Duddingston Low Road closed for almost seven hours after a black Vauxhall Astra van careered into railings near Arthur’s Seat and was left hanging over a verge.

The dramatic incident saw the vehicle veer off the winding road – close to the entrance of the Innocent Railway Tunnel – at around 7.20am, with images later showing the fire service lifting the vehicle to safety using a small crane. It is understood no-one was injured in the crash.

A spokeswoman for ScotRail Alliance said yesterday morning’s delays and cancellations were caused by a signalling fault near Glasgow Queen Street at around 5am, which led to disruption for trains running to and from the station.

Services between Glasgow and the Capital were reduced to every half hour until the early afternoon.

She said: “We apologise to customers affected by this fault and would like to remind passengers who have been delayed for longer than half an hour that they can take advantage of our Delay Repay guarantee.”

One commuter who attempted to board a train from Linlithgow to Edinburgh described how the carriages were “full to overflowing” with passengers. He said: “By the time the trains got to Linlithgow, they couldn’t have possibly squeezed another person on. There was plenty of frustration on the platform.”

Elsewhere, flooding on the westbound carriageway of the A1, near the Tyne Bridge, saw part of East Lothian’s busiest road closed for much of the day.

The move marked the second time the road had been shut to traffic in just 24 hours, after two lorries overturned on Tuesday morning between Haddington and Dunbar.

And in Edinburgh, traffic lights on Gorgie Road failed for around an hour at 8am due to a “technical fault”, causing queues and confusion at the junction with Chesser Avenue.

A Met Office spokesman said the bad weather hitting the Capital – caused by the tail end of Storm Jonas lashing Scotland – would continue into the end of the week.

While it will be dryer and warmer, he said winds would remain strong, adding: “There is a yellow warning for wind across the Lothians on Friday, with gusts of between 50 and 60mph expected.”

Drivers are being warning of the possibility of continued disruption, with a “be aware” warning for ice also put in place across parts of the Lothians.

alistair.grant@edinburghnews.com