Image sent to SUR by an affected passenger on an AVE train that has been stopped in Toledo. SUR
Major fault halts all high-speed trains between Malaga and Madrid
Rail travel

Major fault halts all high-speed trains between Malaga and Madrid

The problem was detected in an Adif track control system in Toledo, and forced train operators to delay departures and stop trains that were already running. Services are now being restored

Ignacio Lillo


Monday, 15 January 2024, 12:57


A serious fault in a track control halted all high-speed trains between Malaga and Madrid for more than an hour, as well as the connections to the rest of cities in Andalucía.

The problem, which was reported by several SUR readers and later confirmed by Adif sources, happened at 11.30am, when traffic was interrupted in both directions at La Sagra (Toledo) "due to the lack of control at the interlocking".

According to the sources, it was a track device for signalling and turnouts, which is digitally remote-controlled by means of interlockings (electric motors), and which was not obeying the operator at the Centro de Regulacion de Circulación de Atocha (Madrid).

As a result, track technicians had to be deployed to repair the fault on site, with an initial forecast of restarting the interlocking at 12.30pm.

As a result, the first measure was to delay all departures at stations (so as not to leave passengers stranded in the middle of their journey and create more bottlenecks) and to stop the trains that were already running for safety reasons. This failure affected the double track, with all traffic interrupted in both directions, as there is no alternative.

"This is an absolute disaster, we've been stuck in the middle of a field for 45 minutes now," complained a reader from Malaga, who has been trapped on the AVE train that left Madrid at 11.35am. A privately operated Iryo train that left Atocha at 11.45am was also trapped near the previous one, according to another affected passenger.

Adif was confident that from the moment the system is restarted, traffic would gradually be restored.

Finally, after more than 60 minutes delay, the trains resumed running at 1246pm.

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