Channel Tunnel breakdown: Eurostar trains cancelled

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Media captionHundreds of passengers had to be evacuated through the emergency tunnel

Eurostar passengers face further cancellations on Tuesday after a train broke down in the Channel Tunnel.

Hundreds of passengers had to be evacuated from Monday's 06:20 BST Le Shuttle train from Folkestone, which stopped a quarter of the way to France.

Eurotunnel said a fault with the overhead power lines in the tunnel caused the problem.

Eurostar said four trains on Tuesday morning - two in each direction - have been cancelled

'Loss of power'

In a statement on Monday night, the firm said: "Eurotunnel engineers are working to resolve the issues and restore full power to the affected section of the tunnel.

"As a consequence of the ongoing loss of power, Eurotunnel has informed Eurostar that some further disruption should be expected to services tomorrow morning.

"In anticipation and in order to safeguard the majority of services for the remainder of the day, unfortunately it has become necessary to cancel four Eurostar trains."

The cancelled services are:

  • 07:31 London to Paris
  • 08:52 Brussels to London
  • 08:58 London to Brussels
  • 11:43 Paris to London

The Le Shuttle train affected by the power supply fault had stopped about seven miles into the 30-mile journey. Passengers were evacuated into the middle service tunnel, which runs between the two main tunnels and is designed to allow people to escape from halted trains.

Another train was brought from France along the other main tunnel and parked alongside the stopped train to allow passengers to board it and be carried to France without their cars.

The affected train eventually reached France at 17:15 BST on Monday and passengers were reunited with their cars.

Image copyright Luke Chaplin
Image caption There were nearly 400 passengers on the train that stopped in the tunnel

Cyclists competing in the Tour de France flew to France on Monday evening on four chartered planes from London City Airport, after finishing the third stage in London.

P&O Ferries was preparing to transport the Tour's entourage earlier. The fourth stage is set to begin in Le Touquet on Tuesday.

Brian Rees, from the ferry company, said: "We've got something like 1,100 Tour vehicles coming through the course of the afternoon and into the evening.

Michael and Catherine Pike, from south-east London, said they had been stranded in a car park in Calais for about three hours while trying to get back home.

Mrs Pike, 80, said: "We were hoping to catch a ferry but haven't heard a peep out of anybody at all.

"There is food but nobody says a word."

The Port of Dover advised people to contact their ferry operator before travelling.

Eurotunnel apologised for the delays and said it had tried to keep customers moving.

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