A charity has hit out after a bus driver left a woman stranded between Edinburgh and Glasgow in the dead of night.
The incident happened on the number 900 Scottish Citylink night service between the two cities at midnight on 8 June.
A witness said the woman had asked to use the toilet but was told it was out of bounds, even though it was fully working.
Women are constantly warned to exercise caution in an effort to keep themselves safe; the reality is though, that the responsibility for women’s safety lies with everyone
She asked if she could get off at Harthill services and was allowed to disembark.
However, there was fury aboard the bus when the driver promptly drove off and left her, ignoring complaints from furious passengers.
Scottish Citylink has promised to investigate while Rape Crisis Scotland said the incident breached the company’s “duty of care”.
A Rape Crisis spokeswoman said: “Passenger safety should be a paramount consideration for any transport company and its employees have a serious duty of care towards those on board its vehicles.
“Women are constantly warned to exercise caution in an effort to keep themselves safe; the reality is though, that the responsibility for women’s safety lies with everyone, not least with those with whom they have paid trust to convey them homewards at an hour and via locations where few other options are available.
“If it is indeed the case that a woman was abandoned in the middle of the night in this way, this needs to be properly investigated and appropriate action taken.”
Among the witnesses was writer and actor Pauline Goldsmith, who lodged a complaint with the bus company.
She said: “I couldn’t believe what was happening. The woman, who was on her own, was not causing any bother – she simply needed to use the toilet – toilets that were working. She was told this was a ‘non-toilet service’.
“She got off at Harthill and the bus drove away, leaving her to somehow get to Glasgow on her own in the middle of the night.
“People were furious, remonstrating with the driver. There were people taking pictures of its registration when they got off, so I’m sure there were lots of complaints.
“I’ve spoken to loads of people since this happened, and a shocking number of people have said similar things have happened to them. This is not isolated and it needs to be looked at. Does the company have a policy for such things?”
A spokeswoman for Scottish Citylink said: "We are sorry to hear of this alleged issue involving one of our customers. This service was operated on our behalf by a third party operator who are following up these allegations with the driver involved.
"We expect a high standard of service from all drivers who work on our behalf and we are sorry if those standards were not met on this occasion.
"We would encourage the customer involved to contact us directly so that we can find out more and apologise in person for the issues that appear to have occurred during her journey."