THE west of Scotland was today braced for floods as torrential rain, strong winds and high tides were ­expected to batter the country.

Commuters returning to work after the festive break faced travel disruption as trains were cancelled or delayed and roads waterlogged.

Environmental agency SEPA had 38 flood warnings in place, including in Dumbarton, Gourock, Greenock, Port Glasgow and Renfrew.

It came following weeks of severe weather, which has led to flooding to homes and businesses.

A spokesman from West Dunbartonshire Council said a flood warning had been ­issued to Dumbarton for 1pm today.

He added: "The car park areas near the High Street, riverside pathways and any other low-lying areas are ­expected to see some flooding."

Flood sacks and sand bags were put in place in vulnerable areas.

Meanwhile, rail services were severely disrupted between Glasgow Central and Ardrossan and Largs.

ScotRail said services between Edinburgh and Helensburgh Central via Airdrie also faced delays.

Several ferry services had to be axed, with others disrupted.

Cancelled services included Argyll Ferries crossings between Gourock and Dunoon and the P&O Irish Sea route between Cairnryan and Larne and bet­ween Troon and Larne.

It came after First Minister Alex Salmond yesterday chaired a meeting of the Scottish Government's Resilience Room to discuss the predicted bad weather.