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Delays and problems with air conditioning: UK-France trains hit by heatwave

The train service between Britain and France was hit by the heatwave on Friday, with passengers warned to expect delays and problems with the air conditioning.

Delays and problems with air conditioning: UK-France trains hit by heatwave
Photo: AFP

“It's a very busy day, it's the day when everyone leaves on holiday,” said a spokesman for Eurotunnel, which operates a drive-on train service for cars and trucks going through the Channel Tunnel.

“We are in a heatwave, and added to this is the problem of air conditioning in our shuttles.”

The Channel Tunnel runs for 50 kilometres (30 miles) between Kent in southeast England and northern France. Opened in 1994, it is the world's longest uninterrupted undersea link.

“The high temperatures are affecting the operation of air conditioning on our trains resulting (in) delays. We recommend you stock up with drinking water before you arrive,” Eurotunnel said on its Twitter account.

The hottest temperatures of the year in Britain were recorded on Thursday

The mercury hit 35.1 degrees Celsius in Wisley on the southwest edge of London.

On Thursday, Eurotunnel delays hit four to five hours.

On Friday, “we are at around one hour and 30 minutes, only on the British side. This is because all the shuttles are in service,” the spokesman said.

Different services run through the Channel Tunnel: Eurostar passenger trains, Eurotunnel vehicle shuttles and goods trains.

READ ALSO:

Roasting Paris commuters complain of '43C temperatures' on packed RER trainsPhoto: AFP

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EUROSTAR

Eurostar’s souvenir bomb warning after Paris station evacuated

Passengers on Eurostar have been warned about bringing shells that have been turned into souvenirs onto the trains after Paris' Gare du Nord station had to be evacuated.

Eurostar's souvenir bomb warning after Paris station evacuated
The Eurostar terminal at Gare du Nord was evacuated
The Paris transport hub had to be evacuated early on Monday morning after a World War II shell was found in a passenger's bag.
 

 

The evacuation, which happened at about 5.45am on Monday, was completed by 10am, but has led to longer than usual queues for Eurostar services.

It is the latest in a series of security alerts caused by passengers trying to take souvenir war artillery on to trains.

Eurostar issued a special warning ahead of the First World War commemorations in November 2018, but with just a month to go until memorial events for the D Day landings, there are fears that the problems could recur.
 
“As you're travelling during the commemoration period, please remember that you can't bring any real or replica bombs, shells (complete or partial) or weapons on board – even if you bought them from a gift shop,” Eurostar told passengers last year.
   
“If you bring them with you, they'll be confiscated at security and may result in the need to evacuate the station.”
   
Old World War I shells turned into flower pots have been popular souvenirs in Belgium and France ever since the end of the conflict, but passengers attempting to take them on board trains for Britain have sparked bomb scares in recent years.
 
Some of the alerts, which happen every few months, have also been caused by war memorabilia collectors bringing back disarmed ordnance unearthed by farmers at battle sites in northeast France.
   
Eurostar said even disarmed shells can set off X-ray alarms.
   
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