View Full Version : Eurotunnel closed

Mr Angry from Purley
18th Jan 2015, 08:50
BBC News - Eurotunnel passenger: 'Smoke came in, gas masks dropped' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-30865260)

If the "gas" masks are dropping they really are in trouble :\

tony draper
18th Jan 2015, 09:16
Dont think UKIP will go that far Mr Angry. :rolleyes:

Shaggy Sheep Driver
18th Jan 2015, 10:50
Bluddy HGV on fire - again! As it was the previous times fire has closed the tunnel.

Ban 'em!

Lon More
18th Jan 2015, 12:23
One tunnel open, expected backlog cleared and normal services by Monday

18th Jan 2015, 12:32
I've been in a tunnel during a vehicle fire, long before this one opened. Having experienced what happens (and how quickly things deteriorate), I'll never be persuaded to go in this one.

SMT Member
18th Jan 2015, 12:46
Rather than the usual knee-jerk reactions, amply displayed here, the real questions are:

* Did anybody get hurt, and if so what were the exact circumstances?
* Did the safety measures work as intended, and were other occupants kept safe from getting near the accident area?
* Was the accident scene cleared and normal services resumed within a reasonable timeframe?
* Which lessons can be drawn from this incident, and do they warrant any additional precautions to be implemented?

Banning heavy vehicles is, of course, one solution. That such a move might also ruin Eurotunnel, or at least make it much more expensive for other users, is also indisputable.

Of course, there is also the option of retreating to Snowdonia and carve an existence out of cave dwelling, free from all the trappings of modernity.

18th Jan 2015, 12:52
free from all the trappings of modernity.

Anywhere in Wales will do..no need to go as far as Snowdonia ;)

Shaggy Sheep Driver
18th Jan 2015, 12:57
Or, SMT, you could address the problem so that it doesn't happen again, which (as this is at least the third time an HGV fire has closed the tunnel, one of them causing a great deal of damage) has evidently not been done.

Running off to a cave in Wales and ignoring the problem is no answer.

G&T ice n slice
18th Jan 2015, 12:58
Surely the headline should read:
"Eurotunnel closed - continent cut off"

Flying Lawyer
18th Jan 2015, 13:07
Yes, it made me think of the famous newspaper headline from the 1950s:

Heavy Fog In Channel. Continent Cut Off.

I don't know if it's apocryphal or actually appeared.

18th Jan 2015, 13:18
Eurostar confirmed trains started moving through the tunnel again about 11:30 GMT, but at a reduced speed and only one of the two tunnels is open.This is, apparently, because the train carrying the burned truck is still in the tunnel - how long since the event? :confused:

From (and more at):-
BBC News - Delays and cancellations as Channel Tunnel services resume (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-30868990)

Shaggy Sheep Driver
18th Jan 2015, 13:55
Previous HGV fires in the tunnel have been made worse by the practice of transporting the HGVs in open mesh rail vehicles which allows the train's slipstream to fan any fire with a continuous blast of fresh air. After the last one, there was talk of modifying these to fully-enclosed rail vehicles to prevent that happening.

Does anyone know if that was done?

18th Jan 2015, 14:32
Now if this was the airlines cross-channel serices that were delayed or cancelled;

All passengers would be entitled to

Meals and refreshments in proportion to the waiting time
Two telephone calls, fax or telex messages, or emails
Hotel accommodation and transport between the airport and the hotel, if a stay of one or more nights, or a stay additional to that intended by the passenger becomes necessary

The above is mandatory - airlines are obligated to prove this, at a minimum.

Plus cash compensation if the airline couldn't justify 'extraordinary circumstances' - mixed feelings on this as the train companies should really have invested in adequate backups.

None of the above applies to the railroads.

18th Jan 2015, 16:11
Was a cartoon in Punch (Brockbank?) IIRC.

18th Jan 2015, 16:14
None of the above applies to the railroads.

The reality for me - as a frequent Ryanair and Eurostar passenger - is that getting the aforementioned compensation from Ryanair is almost impossible, whereas Eurostar couldn't be more cooperative and helpful.

Shaggy Sheep Driver
18th Jan 2015, 16:59
This, like the all too common bridge bashes, is really a problem given to the railway by the HGV industry. Considering the intensive use we make of our overcrowded under-invested rail infrastructure in UK I'm always amazed how remarkably on-time most train journeys are. More so than air travel in my experience.

18th Jan 2015, 17:01
From the Beeb:- a four-hour wait to board shuttles in France.
Passengers were also warned to expect delays of up to two hours from the time they board a running service.

18th Jan 2015, 17:04

There is 'care' (meals; refreshment; communications; hotac) and compensation (cash).

To which do you refer? AFAIK there is no obligation for the trains to provide 'care'.

18th Jan 2015, 17:14
My point was that there are legal requirements and there is reality, and faced with the latter - in my experience - I have found Eurostar (not railways in general) better than Ryanair (not airlines in general).

However I have also found the SNCF/TGV network capable of ignoring what they are obliged to do, and going further to help passengers.

18th Jan 2015, 17:27
When I was delayed on Eurostar by about 40 minutes a few years ago, staff handed out travel vouchers on arrival at Waterloo. I think ours were 50 each. What impressed me was the professional way they kept us informed and how pleasant they were.

More recently when a journey (in premium class) was spoilt by the yobbish behaviour of 4 drunken 'Hooray Henry' types who'd clearly enjoyed a very long liquid lunch in Paris, and started throwing foul language and bits of food and beer cans around, they moved the rest of us to another area, took emails, and sent a letter of apology with a hamper containing a selection of tea, biscuits, and coffee, all top of the range. They certainly didn't have to do that as the incident wasn't even their fault.

18th Jan 2015, 17:52
Rather than the usual knee-jerk reactions, amply displayed here, the real questions are:

Nothing knee jerk about my reaction. My viewpoint came out of personally experiencing what happens when a vehicle goes on fire in a tunnel. To see how rapidly the environment became uninhabitable was sobering to say the least. I take it you've never personally seen this yourself or you might think very differently and not be so dismissive of those who have.

Lon More
18th Jan 2015, 18:30
the train carrying the burned truck is still in the tunnel - how long since the event?

accident investigation then the Insurance bids will want a look. After the train is removed the tunnel will need an inspection. possibly some track and overhead to replace.
Banning freight is never going to happen, too much a section of their core business

18th Jan 2015, 20:35
OFSO wrote:

......However I have also found the SNCF/TGV network capable of ignoring what they are obliged to do, and going further to help passengers.

I was on holiday with the wife and daughters in Paris in 2008 and our return to the UK via Eurostar was thwarted by the fire which closed the tunnel. SNCF/TGV were brilliant in helping to arrange alternative travel to Calais, buses to the port and a ferry booking to Dover. Nothing seemed to be too much trouble.

However, once back on UK soil.......:ugh:

18th Jan 2015, 21:11
I book all my journeys with non-redeemable non-changeable tickets only valid for the journey you book on*. Yet in the case of Problems I've never had difficulty being allowed on another train. Interestingly Eurostar and the TGV net work together and if one is delayed, that non-switchable ticket can be allocated to another train.

*Booking three months ahead, a very cheap way to travel. Firest Class Perpignan - Paris, five hours, €35-€45 for example.

18th Jan 2015, 23:12
Only one tunnel in operation - and expected to be thus until Tuesday.

Trains were running in tranches of 90 minutes today (one way, then the other).

18th Jan 2015, 23:48
No need for knee jerk reactions, simple cost benefit analysis. How many HGV's and how many accidents. How much does HGV business make up as a total cost.

What has the HGV incidents been ? Brakes, engine's, electrical? It may well be a simple cheap technological solution to screen the trucks will bring the optimum cost benefit, risk ratio.

19th Jan 2015, 07:29
Looks like walking outside the station is more dangerous than being in the tunnel.....



joy ride
19th Jan 2015, 08:46
OFSO wrote: "Firest Class". Very apt

The station video: yet another pedestrian stepping out into a road without bothering to look, something that's now at pandemic level in London.

Shaggy Sheep Driver
19th Jan 2015, 11:00
Didn't something (a motorbike on its side perhaps?) slide in from the left at speed and take out the pedestrian?

19th Jan 2015, 11:10
Trains were running in tranches

Holy Cow, they run in TRENCHES ? Surely tunnels ?

Oh, right......