ScotRail has apologised after one of its busiest services from North Berwick to Edinburgh ran with half the usual amount of carriages this morning.

The 7.53am train from North Berwick to Edinburgh normally runs with six carriages.

However, only three carriages were provided this morning, resulting in a significant number of passengers having to stand. . . and some unable to get on the train at all at Wallyford and Musselburgh.

A spokesperson for ScotRail told the Courier that the reduction in carriages was a result of a train fault and that services would run as normal tomorrow.

The spokesperson said: “Unfortunately, the 07.53 North Berwick to Edinburgh service operated with fewer carriages due to a train fault.

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“We know that one of the biggest concerns for our customers is busy trains, and we are sorry to any customer who experienced overcrowding or disruption on their journey."

There was also a reduction in carriages on the route last week, which the spokesperson said was a result of strikes.

They said: "There was a strike last week by Hitachi rail workers.

"Hitachi is responsible for the maintenance of the trains on that route, so that caused some issues last week."

Dr DJ Johnston-Smith, chair of Prestonpans Community Council, regularly uses the service and said a reduction in carriages was not a rare occurrence.

He said: “I have been raising this issue for a while now and each time I get a different reason for the reduction in carriages.

“They said it was a fault today, but last week there were only four carriages. They previously told me that it was due to pressures on the services and not being clear when six carriages would be required.

“The busy services in the morning and night clearly need six carriages and I have put in an official complaint to ScotRail in January calling for this.

“There were many passengers left unable to get on the train at Wallyford and Musselburgh this morning and many people forced to stand.

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“It is also dangerous too – if the train was forced to stop in an emergency people would certainly get hurt.”

In a response to Dr Johnston-Smith's complaint, a ScotRail spokesperson said: "It is challenging for us to accurately predict the number of passengers that will board any given service due to the nature of walk-up fares. This offers customers the flexibility of travel at the cost of seat reservations, meaning that these fares do not guarantee a seat.

"Due to the get-up-and-go nature of our railway, we cannot always provide the amount of capacity required."

When asked about the safety of trains when they are overcrowded, a ScotRail spokesperson told the Courier: "There is no specific advice for customers on overcrowding. Services do not operate if they aren’t safe for customers. The conductor would not allow a train to continue if that was the case."