Eurostar train breaks down in Kent, 740 passengers stranded

22nd Feb 2010
Eurostar train breaks down in Kent, 740 passengers stranded

As many as 740 passengers were rescued from a stranded Eurostar train last night, following the latest embarrassing breakdown on the service.

With cancellations over the Christmas period still fresh in passenger’s minds, the latest Eurostar train ground to a halt just outside of Ashford, Kent, at around 22:45 last night.

A “major technical problem” was cited at the cause of the most recent breakdown.

Passengers were subsequently forced to wait for more than an hour before a replacement train arrived to complete the journey to London’s St Pancras Station.

In a statement Eurostar explained: “We don’t know exactly what happened or why at the moment.


“We are investigating what happened fully. The priority at the moment is making sure the passengers are well looked after.

“We are sorry for any discomfort caused.”

Reports suggest the train was immediately plunged into darkness following the fault, while stifling temperatures and broken toilets also added to the discomfort of passengers.

However, Eurostar maintains emergency lighting was eventually introduced.

The stricken train had been expected to leave Paris Gare du Nord station at 19:43 GMT last night; however departure was originally delayed by over an hour following a security alert.

Passengers rescued from the service eventually arrived in London at 02:30 this morning. They were offered taxis, hotel accommodation, a cash refund and a free return ticket in compensation, with Eurostar describing the mood as “extremely good”.

The cross-Channel service has been in the headlines recently, following three days of cancellations in the build-up to the holiday season.

Over 2,000 passengers were trapped in the tunnel for over five hours as trains malfunctioned following heavy snow, while over 100,000 passengers experienced further delays.


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