Martin Whitfield MSP has raised the rail chaos experienced by local commuters earlier this week with the First Minister, Humza Yousaf.

Mr Whitfield asked a question about the issue at First Minister’s Questions, following reports of the overcrowding problems faced by local commuters on early morning services from North Berwick to Edinburgh on Monday and Tuesday.

Regular users of services on the line have also reported that a reduced number of carriages is becoming more common, often leading to overcrowding and discomfort for passengers.

The South Scotland MSP’s question did eventually elicit an apology to local commuters from Mr Yousaf, but only after the First Minister had first extolled the alleged success of rail services under his government.

Speaking after his question, Martin Whitfield MSP said: 

“Improving local rail services is an issue on which I have campaigned ever since I was first elected to represent people in East Lothian.

“While there have undoubtedly been some improvements over recent years, the reported chaos faced by commuters in the last few days was reminiscent of the frequent cancellations and overcrowding experienced on this line in the past.

“I don’t want to see these rail problems become a regular occurrence again. That is why I moved quickly to raise the issue with the First Minister in the Chamber and have also written to the Transport Minister and ScotRail.

“Unfortunately, I don’t think the First Minister’s rather complacent reply will give local rail users much reassurance that dealing with these problems is a priority for either him or his government.

“I’ll continue to pursue this matter until ScotRail and the government have ensured rail users in East Lothian are able to rely on local services to get them to their destination on time and in comfort.”

The full exchange between Mr Whitfield and the First Minister can be watched here.