Eurostar rail services remain suspended as investigations continue into why six trains carrying more than 2,500 passengers broke down, five of them in the undersea tunnel linking Britain and France.
Passengers were stuck on the trains for up to sixteen hours overnight on Friday, apparently due to condensation on the power supply cables and tracks.
Today’s cancellations have angered customers.
“It has been a long time and it has really been hard. Just, we left there (France) must have been 14, 24… 28 hours just to get here, which has been pretty arduous,” said one frustrated traveller.
One woman said: “Eurostar never once apologised. They thanked us for our patience but never said ‘we apologise’ or ‘we regret’, anything like that, which I think is pretty disgusting.”
Eurostar engineers have speculated that the quick transition from the icy cold above ground to the relative warmth of the tunnel, could have interefered with the trains’ electrical systems.
Eurostar is offering an apology and compensation.
Chief Executive Richard Brown said: “What we are offering them is a full refund on their return journey, obviously, as a start. A further free journey with us if they want to take it up, and then 150 pounds per passenger on top of that, on top of out of pocket expenses. We think that is actually reasonably generous, it is a gesture of apology, to say, we are sorry we let you down”.
Richard Brown is under pressure to step down amid calls for his immediate resignation. South-east England’s member of the European parliament Nirj Diva accused Eurostar of “astonishing incompetence”.