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High Speed Train network in Catalonia collapsed this morning

A theft of a fibre optic cable at about 7am this morning caused the absolute paralysation of the High Speed Trains’ service in Catalonia. 40 trains and 13,000 passengers all over the territory were affected. The breakdown started in the route between Figueres, in the north of Catalonia and Barcelona and it consequently affected the whole network. The only trains running from early morning are those between Lleida, in the east of Catalonia and Camp de Tarragona, in the south. Alternative routes and extra buses have been added to guarantee the mobility of these citizens and Renfe, the Spanish public trains’ operator, expects to normalise the system during the day by low-speed trains. This serious incident is to be added to a long list of problems which have occurred in this network during the last decade mainly due to the lack of investment in infrastructure by the Spanish Government.

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08 October 2015 11:20 AM

by

ACN / Sara Prim

Barcelona (CNA).- 40 High Speed Trains paralysed and 13,000 passengers were affected this morning due to a theft of a fibre optic cable in Catalonia. The robbery took place around 7am this morning in Vilafranca del Penedès, 30 km south of Barcelona, and it firstly affected the route between Figueres, in the north of Catalonia and the Catalan capital. Two trains were stuck with 150 and 350 passengers inside each and soon the whole High Speed Trains network collapsed. Alternative routes and extra buses have been added to guarantee the mobility of these citizens and Renfe, the Spanish public trains’ operator, expects to normalise the system during the day by low-speed trains. 


The only trains left running from early morning were those between Lleida, in the east of Catalonia, and Camp de Tarragona, in the south. Thousands of people arrived late to work, without Renfe offering information about estimated arrival and departure times or providing enough alternative means of transport. This is not the first time that the railway system has collapsed in Catalonia. Today’s chaos is to be added to a long list of problems which have occurred on this network during the last decade, mainly due to the lack of investment in infrastructure by the Spanish Government. In May, the entire short- and medium-distance train network run by Spanish Government in Catalonia collapsed. On that occasion, the cause was a major failure in the control centre of the IT system of the network run by Adif and operated by Renfe, two public companies both owned and managed by the Spanish Government.

50% of the thefts are in Catalonia

The Spanish Public Works Minister Ana Pastor apologised to the passengers that were affected by the incident. “These are very grave offenses, as they affect the public services and the daily lives of hundreds of people to whom we must apologise” she stated and lamented that 50% of copper, and now for the first time fibre optic, thefts happen in Catalonia. “Although there are many security cameras and exploration trains, thousands of people work hard to do these crimes” she admitted and asked for Catalan police, ‘Mossos d’Esquadra’, collaboration.

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  • High Speed Train stucked in Lleida, this morning (by ACN)

  • High Speed Train stucked in Lleida, this morning (by ACN)