14 May, 2024 @ 12:13
1 min read

Copper wire thieves are causing repeated delays and disruption on multiple train lines in Barcelona

Thousands of commuters have been left stranded

BARCELONA’S local Rodalies train network has been thrown into chaos after a host of copper wire thefts saw trains cancelled and thousands of commuters stranded.

The disruption started on Sunday, the day of the Catalan regional elections, after the network suffered a ‘structural failure’ following the theft of copper wires from the train line in Montcada i Reixac northeast of Barcelona, according to the Spanish rail operator Renfe.

None of the commuter train lines were able to reach Barcelona on Sunday morning, with additional disruption for regional trains whilst high-speed routes functioned as normal.

The theft of the copper wires led to the closure of the Sagrera metro station after excess voltage set alight minor fires within the network’s tunnels.

Many passengers are still being forced to take alternative routes as the commuter train lines slowly return to normal operation.

The R1 line of the Rodalies commuter train service resumed normal service whilst the R4 lines, north and south, were restricted to two and four trains per hour respectively. 

READ MORE: Costa del Sol train latest: Andalucia President says project is essential for Malaga’s economy as he blasts Madrid for ‘laughing and looking the other way’

On the R3, trains will only run between Pugicerda and Ripollet with Renfe, the nationalised train service operator, vowing to put on alternative bus services for commuters.

The R2 and R8 have returned to normal service, whilst the R7 and R12 regional lines are still suffering from repeated delays and disruption.

The R13 and R14 lines from Lleida and Borges Blanques suffered further disruption after a new theft of copper wires in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Clips shared on social media showed queues of hundreds of commuters waiting for alternative bus services in the wake of the chaos.

Ben Pawlowski

Ben joined the Olive Press in January 2024 after a four-month stint teaching English in Paraguay. He loves the adrenaline rush of a breaking news story and the tireless work required to uncover an eye-opening exclusive. He is currently based in Barcelona from where he covers the city, the wider Catalunya region, and the north of Spain. Send tips to [email protected]

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