RAIL passengers travelling between Bournemouth and Southampton have described "chaotic scenes" when the service was suspended on Saturday afternoon after the track apparently buckled in the heat.

On one of the busiest travel days in the south this year, and with temperatures soaring, reported track problems at Totton caused the suspension of all services between Southampton Central and Bournemouth railway stations for several hours.

Frustrated passengers - some who endured FOUR hour queues at Bournemouth station - had to fork out up to £60 for onward taxi rides to Southampton.

Michael Kerr, who was travelling from Southampton to Wool, said an announcement was made on the train saying taxis were being ordered to take passengers from Bournemouth station to Southampton.

"What they didn't tell us was there would be utter chaos on the platform with up to 1,000 people on the platform waiting for taxis," he added.

"Nobody knew what was going on - young families and OAP's were all left to fend for themselves in high temperatures.

"Four hours later we were just 20 people away from the taxi pickup point when a South West Trains employee instructed all remaining passengers to get on a train now at the station."

Another passenger, travelling from Southampton back to Bournemouth, told the Echo she was charged £60 for the taxi ride, a journey which would normally cost £12 return by rail.

"It was chaos at Southampton, there was no real queuing system either and it was a really, really hot day. People were getting quite angry. We were told we'd be able to claim our taxi fares back, but we still had to find the money at the time."

Even when the track problems were rectified, passengers faced chaotic scenes well into the night.

The Daily Echo's repeated attempts to contact South West Trains have gone unanswered.