New French trains too wide for station platforms

The trains arw too wide, and 1,000 stations will need to be reconfigured.
By Ed Adamczyk Follow @adamczyk_ed Contact the Author   |   May 21, 2014 at 10:30 AM

PARIS, May 21 (UPI) -- The French railroad network SNCF, after spending billions for 2,000 new trains, discovered many of their station platforms cannot accommodate the trains.

The "Regio 2N" double-deck trains, bought for $20.5 billion, will require adjustments to over 1,000 platforms because they are wider than standard trains; edges of platforms are too close to tracks, meaning the trains cannot enter and leave stations without scraping the platforms.

The blunder has already cost SNCF over $68.4 million, and is believed to have been caused by SNCF receiving incorrect dimensions for the trains from rail operator RFF.

An RFF spokesman confirmed it had "discovered the problem a bit late."

Transport Minister Frederic Cuvillier blamed an "absurd rail system," adding, "When you separate the rail operator from the train company, this is what happens."

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