The decision to close two of Scotland's coastguard stations is "wrong and deeply concerning", an MP has said.
Iain McKenzie hit out at the UK Government's changes, which have already seen the Forth coastguard station close while Clyde coastguard is also due to be axed.
Coastguard staff at Aberdeen have taken on responsibility for the Forth area and after the Clyde coastguard station closes, responsibility for the area will be divided between Belfast and Stornoway. Mr McKenzie spoke out as Westminster's Scottish Affairs Committee published a report on the issue.
The Labour MP for Inverclyde said: "The Government's decision to close two of Scotland's maritime rescue co-ordination centres is wrong and deeply concerning."
Mr McKenzie, a member of the committee, said MPs had heard from "a number of coastguard experts and the Save our Coastguard campaigners who agree that the decision to centralise and close coastguard stations will have major safety implications for the west coast of Scotland and will impact on services throughout Scotland".
In its report, the committee warned the closure of the Forth and Clyde coastguard stations would leave a "major gap in local knowledge among coastguards in the remaining four maritime rescue co-ordination centres (MRCCs)".
MPs on the committee accepted the Government had "pledged to have effective measures in place" before the Clyde station closes at the end of this year - describing this as "essential".
They said: "The Government must not only ensure that these measures are in place, but take steps to reassure the public that they are in place, and that there will be no loss of operational efficiency nor any threat to members of the public because of a shortfall in local knowledge."
In their report, the MPs stated they had "yet to hear a convincing rationale for the decision to close Clyde and Forth MRCCs". They added that even if it was necessary to close two stations, they had "heard no satisfactory explanation for the fact that the central belt of Scotland, where the population is most densely concentrated, should be left without a coastguard station, and will instead be served from Belfast and Aberdeen".
Transport Minister Stephen Hammond stressed that safety remained the Government's "top priority" as he said: "Our reforms to modernise the coastguard will deliver a more resilient, fully-networked rescue co-ordination system benefiting all parts of the UK, including Scotland."