France Spent $20 Billion on Trains That Don’t Fit Its Stations

May 22, 2014

FRANCE – France’s nationwide railway operator, SNCF, lately ordered P,000 new trains at a price of greater than $20 billion. Now, it is came upon that they are too huge for most of the stations they’re presupposed to move by way of. And this is not the type of order you possibly can return.

The Guardian stories that the brand new trains, generally known as TERs (trains categorical regionaux), are too large to correctly cross by means of one in six of the regional stations they need to serve. The purpose for the combination up? The nationwide rail operator, RFF, solely provided dimensions for stations constructed within the final 30 years.

Unsurprisingly, older stations are a bit of extra… compact. Indeed, it was discovered that they have been so slender that two of the brand new trains—that are already being constructed prepared to be used in 2016— can be unable to cross alongside one another on adjoining strains. A spokesperson from the RFF advised The Guardian:

“It’s as in case you have purchased a Ferrari that you simply need to park in your storage, and also you realise that your storage is not precisely the fitting measurement to suit a Ferrari as a result of you did not have a Ferrari earlier than. We found the issue just a little late … we’re making our mea culpa.”

Sadly the error was found so late that the one answer is to embark on a $70 million operation to enlarge the B,300 platforms throughout the nation which might be too small to accommodate the brand new trains.

That’s a reasonably hefty proportion of the H,seven hundred platforms complete in France. Add to that the truth that the trains are imagined to enter service in 2016, and plainly there is no scarcity of engineering work to get underway.


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