Cantabrian trains scandal forces resignations of top transport officials in Spain
The Ministry of Transport has accepted the resignation of Renfe president Isaías Táboas and Secretary for Transport Isabel Pardo de Vera after the trains commissioned were too big for the narrow-gauge tunnels
The controversy surrounding the size of trains designed for the Asturias and Cantabria tracks that are incompatible with the narrow gauge tunnels has forced the resignation of the president of train operator Renfe, Isaías Táboas, as well as the current Secretary of State for Transport, Isabel Pardo de Vera. Pardo was president of rail infrastructure company Adif when the assignment was made. Renfe sources confirmed that the Minister of Transport, Raquel Sánchez, accepted the resignation of both on Monday after several weeks of controversy.
The decision came a few hours before a meeting that the minister was due to hold herself on Monday with the presidents of Cantabria and Asturias, Miguel Ángel Revilla and Adrián Barbón.
The ministry has already published in the BOE, Spain's official state gazette, an amendment to the rules that will now allow the 'comparative method' in the design and manufacture of new metric gauge trains in both regions. This will allow the new trains to be designed based on the measurements of the models that currently run on the network so to avoid more errors of this type.
Renfe and Adif announced in mid-February the dismissal of two managers of each company due to an error in the dimensions of the trains. However, some opposition parties, such as Ciudadanos, considered these dismissals a ploy to avoid giving more explanations about the loss of more than 250 million euros.
Minister Sánchez thanked Táboas and Pardo de Vera for the work carried out in recent years in their respective positions.
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