More than 8,500 queries were handled by Lothian on its social platforms during a 48-hour period at the peak of the recent extreme weather, as well as 500 calls to its customer services team.
With all services back to normal after the snow caused by the ‘Beast from the East’ and Storm Emma, the company has thanked its customers for their patience during the disruption, as well as its staff for their efforts.
Richard Hall, Lothian’s Managing Director, said: “The extreme weather conditions on Wednesday, February 28, brought in by the recent storm made driving conditions impossible and we’re extremely grateful for all of our customers for their understanding over the period.
“We know that our bus services are vital – both as a lifeline for the people of Edinburgh and the Lothians and as a contributor to the wider city economy. However, we had to make the difficult decision to suspend the bulk of our network for the safety of our staff and our customers following the red weather warning and the advice given by the Scottish Government.
“I would also like to pay tribute to every single member of our team at Lothian from our engineering and operational staff, through to our dedicated communications and customer services teams, who have all worked tirelessly to keep our customers up to date and then get services back up and running as quickly as possible. Many of our staff have gone beyond the call of duty to work together to deliver a safe, reliable service to the hundreds of thousands of people who rely on us every day.”
Transport and Environment Convener, Cllr Lesley Macinnes, added: “Last week brought some of the worst weather conditions we’ve seen for almost a decade, posing a real challenge for people getting around Edinburgh. Throughout this period we worked closely with Lothian who, along with Edinburgh Trams, helped keep the city moving, providing vital public transport links and up-to-date information to the public.
“This is also thanks to the dedication of staff from across the Council, who worked round the clock to clear routes of snow and ice, making way for their safe use by public transport, which is so essential for getting people from A to B.”
Lothian suspended its full network of services in the early evening of February 28, with only vital links to the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh continuing into the night and Airlink 100 continuing to run on a reduced basis connecting customers and staff from Edinburgh Airport to the City.
Throughout the morning of Thursday, March 1, Lothian continued to monitor road conditions on an hourly basis, before taking the decision for its customers and staff that no further services could run that day across the network safely. Services returned with the provision of a Sunday service on Friday, March 2 from lunchtime, which ran throughout the entire weekend subject to local road conditions.