If the planned power cut schedule is activated during a full day next winter, trains will grind to a complete halt across the entire country, indicated several sources within the SNCB and reported by De Morgen on Wednesday. Trains will be cancelled not only in the areas affected by the power outages, but nationwide, although 85% of trains are powered by overhead lines. The problem lies with the signal boxes, level crossings and switches that are connected to the local power grid and without which the trains cannot be allowed to run.
According to a security audit conducted by Infrabel railway infrastructure management, it would clearly be too dangerous.In case of a power cut, its experts therefore recommend all trains be cancelled on the network throughout that day.
SNCB CEO Jo Cornu says a solution needs to be found.
A working group made up of the SNCB, Infrabel and the Energy, Economy and Mobility cabinet ministers has already been set up, although it has not yet been able to come up with a solution.
Christopher Vincent (Source: Belga)