Scandal of trains that don’t fit the tunnels in Spain


Dozens of new trains ordered for two northern Spanish regions, Asturias and Cantabria, at Basque-based manufacturer CAF, were designed too big to fit through some tunnels built in the 19th Century. The trains are built under a €258m (£227.5m) contract. The Spanish government says the mistake was spotted early enough to avoid financial loss.. Miguel Ángel Revilla, the regional president of Cantabria, described the project as a “bodge”. Adrián Barbón, the president of Asturias, said he was “baffled, angry and disappointed.”On Monday, in connection with this, Isabel Pardo de Vera, Spain’s secretary of state for transport, tendered her resignation. The president of the state rail operator Renfe, Isaías Táboas, also resigned.


The trains will be redesigned to fit the tunnels. Because the mistake, the 31 trains will be delivered in 2026, two years later. Both regions will now have to wait. The initial order will be increased by an additional seven trains. Other trains already operating the routes would be given a facelift in the meantime.Free travel on Renfe suburban services in Asturias and Cantabria is offered and will continue until the arrival of the new train fleet.