Thousands trapped in train as electrical problem erupts


Paris (Metro Rail News) – Thousands of passengers were trapped overnight on high-speed TGV trains halted by electrical problems in southwestern France, some pleading for water, food or fresh air.

Frustrated travellers raised attention to their plight on social networks, posting images of children sleeping on floors and describing the challenge of staying masked for as much as 20 hours straight.

National rail authority SNCF on Monday apologized for “a series of electrical supply incidents” that started Sunday afternoon and halted traffic in southwestern France and disrupted travel from there to Paris.

Four high-speed trains, connecting Bordeaux with other cities in the region, were stuck on tracks into the night, with knock-on effects on other routes, SNCF said.

Passengers were taken back to their departure points overnight and Monday morning, then put on buses and other trains to eventually reach their destinations.

The problems came as millions of French people prepared to return to work and school this week — many returned Sunday by train from August vacations.

“Traffic isn’t expected to return to normal until Tuesday morning and an internal probe has been ordered”, said SNCF.

SNCF will reimburse all passengers three times the cost of their tickets and distributed masks, water and food, the junior minister for transport, Jean-Baptiste Djebbari said.

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