The unusual heavy rainfall of October 22 and 23 has caused important damages to the railway infrastructures in the department Aude and Hérault. The railbed and the severly damaged catenary systems for nearly one kilometer in the Villeneuve-les-Béziers area necessitedto the total interruption of rail traffic.
Diagnoses conducted by the SNCF Réseau teams made it possible to assess the importance of the damage and to define the work and the schedule to rebuilt the infrastructure. The platform on which the track rests has been washed away by the water for several hundred meters. These foundations must be completely rebuilt to grant the stability of the railway and the traffic security. These large-scale operations involve several weeks of intense work and extraordinary action.
The rail construction that has already started is carried out in several stages : removal of the railway track and connecting the catenary wires to the undamaged poles, earthworks, reconstruction of the railway platform, laying of the track and of new catenary poles.
Finally, all the entire security and signalling facilities will be checked according to the procedure before the resumption of rail traffic.
NEW ARRANGEMENTS FOR FREIGHT TRAINS
Approximately 40 freight trains run every day between Béziers and Sète. These are the railway highways. Boulou-Bettembourg and Boulou-Calais and Freight trains connecting the Iberian peninsula to France, Italie, Germany and Belgium.
In order to ensure continuity of service for merchandise transport, arrangements are made since 23rd October in collaboration with European infrasrtucture managers :
- Daily situation points are achieved with the railway companies and with the different loaders,
- Freight customers determine which train they want to run as a priority and diversion routes are set up via the Atlantic route.
- Traffic on other trains is delayed.