First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in the bus control room

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.

And their customer services team dealt 500 calls and Richard Hall, Lothian’s MD said: “The extreme weather conditions made driving conditions impossible and we’re extremely grateful to 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.”

He paid tribute to every single member of his team at Lothian from our engineering and operational staff, through to our dedicated communications and customer services teams.

They had worked tirelessly to keep customers up-to-date and then get services back up and running as quickly as possible.

He added: “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.”

Councillor Lesley Macinnes, Transport and Environment Convener, added: “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.

“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.”