Spain has spent 258 million euros on trains too big to fit into the tunnels of the railway network.
After the blunder was revealed by local newspaper El Comercio in late January, two traffic leaders were fired.
And now two of Spain’s top transport officials have resigned over the case: Isaias Tapuas, president of the Spanish railway company, RENFE, and Isabel Pardo de Vera, Secretary of State for Transport, have left their posts.
The trains (31 units in total) were ordered by RENFE in 2020. These aircraft were supposed to replace the old fleet in the poorly connected northern autonomous regions, Asturias and Cantabria.
The originally planned completion in 2024 is now likely to be pushed back to at least 2026. On Tuesday, it was also revealed that the manufacturer, CAF, based in the Basque Country, had already reported the bug in March 2021.
Cantabrian President Miguel Ángel Riva described what happened as a “huge mistake”, adding that “heads must fall”, as reported by the Spanish regional newspaper El Diario Montanes.
After awarding the production contract to CAF, RENFE claims it Railway infrastructure operator Gave measurements based on specifications given by Adif. CAF later warned that the specifications may not be correct.
The region’s railway network, built in the 19th century, runs through a mountainous landscape. He adds that the tunnels vary in size and do not correspond to standardized modern dimensions euronews.
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