FOOTBALL fans and other travellers have slammed ScotRail after multiple services out of Glasgow Central were subjected to a series of cancellations and delays before Scotland's crucial Euro 2020 qualifier against Russia.

The train operator said a traveller pulling an emergency alarm between Glasgow Central and Pollokshields East at around 6.06pm caused disruption to services to and from Queen's Park, Neilston, Newton (Lanark), East Kilbride and Barrhead. 

Issues were expected to continue till 9.00pm.   In an update at 10pm, ScotRail confirmed disruption is now expected till at least 11pm, after the Scotland game finishes.

It has led to many fans missing the start of the big match at Hampden.

The train operator told one concerned customer that the incident happened on the 6.06pm train from Glasgow Central to Neilston.  "This immediately applies the brakes and immediately stops the train, this is what caused the disruption," said the ScotRail message.

READ MORE: ScotRail announce extra Aberdeen train after 'clueless' Hampden plans

 "Our staff are working hard and are fault finding. More staff are enroute and we will update you once we get more information from the ground," said ScotRail.

Glasgow Times:

The train operator said that train services are able to "work around" the services "which is at a stand, however we have some delays/alterations and cancellations ongoing."

There was a knock-on effect on other routes because they share the section of track between Glasgow Central and Pollokshields East where the train was stopped.

Later ScotRail said some services were on the move but "some disruption is ongoing due to units and crews being out of position".

At around 8.15pm,  ScotRail said that ticket acceptance on buses, previously advertised, had been withdrawn. This was because services had started to run again.

Travellers have already complained about hold ups trying to get to the match at Hampden.

Just two days ago, ScotRail said it was reviewing how it plans for major events after passengers faced significant disruption to services at Edinburgh Waverley last month.

Commuters experienced overcrowding, delays and cancellations at the station on Saturday August 24.

Bruce Wilkie complained to ScotRail on social media saying:  "Hundreds of fans in Central Station will miss the start of tonight's match because of ScotRail incompetence."

"Scottish Government sort this out now. This and Edinburgh debacle show the business has no effective business continuity plan."

One fan Bruce MacFarlane sent a Tweet three minutes after the Scotland game kicked off to say that his train had finally left after asking ScotRail why a train full of Scotland fans was sitting at Central.  

He said: "What an absolute shambles. Every Scotland fan on this train has missed kick off through no fault of their own. We have been on this for well over half an hour and it’s stopping at multiple stops prior to Mount Florida."

ScotRail responded: "We share your frustration, Bruce. The disruption is because someone activated the communication alarm on an earlier train."

Andrew Simpson said: "Stuck for an hour on the train to Mount Florida because someone pulled the emergency stop. ScotRail sort this out now! Train full of fans going to the match getting angry! Why so slow?"

In response, ScotRail said on social media: "We're working hard to get the train moving again, staff are fault-finding as we speak and an engineer is on the way."

READ MORE: First Glasgow launch bus service to Hampden for Euro 2020s

One said on social media: "Standard shambles from @scotrail at Glasgow Central. Been queued for a train to Mount Florida for 40 mins now. My other half left for Murrayfield at 6pm and is at the stadium already. Total joke."

Ruairidh McMillan added: I'm currently 1 hour into a wait for the latest  @ScotRail train that is "delayed"... Two Scotland fan trains have run. Both of which are unlikely to get fans to the game in time."

One traveller with the Twitter handle @DivitXiles who took a picture of crowds outside Central Station said he was forced to get a taxi to get to the game.

He said: "Sixty minutes before KO and queue’s are massive ? Was it hard to organise?

"I’m not there to cause hassle for people that work hard. I just wan infrastructure in place to make it easy for folk. It cost over £17 for public transport to get to Glasgow and struggled to get to game and had to get taxi. Game has been planned for a year."

A ScotRail spokesperson said in response:  “We regularly add extra services and more seats to trains to help supporters get to big matches such as internationals and cup finals.

“Football without fans is nothing, that’s why we’ll continue to do our bit to help travelling fans cheer on their side.”

ScotRail had earlier said that tickets can be used on the following local buses at no extra cost. 
With First Bus between Glasgow and Patterton (Cathcart Circle): at the following stations; 
Glasgow, Pollokshields East, Queens Park, Crosshill, Mount Florida, Cathcart, Muirend, Williamwood, Whitecraigs & Patterton on bus services - 3, 4/A, 5, 6, 7/A, 21, 31, 34/A, 38, 57/A, 75, 90.  

This has since been withdrawn.