SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA, 18 (EUROPA PRESS)
The Grupo Popular de Galicia has registered a non-legal proposal in the Parliament of Galicia to demand that the Government of Spain “assume the appropriate political responsibilities in the face of the bungling that prevents renewing the train fleet of the narrow gauge state network (FEVE) within the initially agreed deadlines.
“This is one more example of the evident lack of commitment and disinterest of the Ministry of Transport for this public service that, in the case of Galicia, operates in the north of the provinces of Lugo and A Coruña. Specifically, it connects the coastal town councils of A Mariña Lugo, Ortegal and Ferrolterra, as a continuation of a network that links Galicia with Asturias, Cantabria and the Basque Country”, has defended the popular spokesperson for Infrastructures, José Manuel Balseiro.
In the parliamentary initiative they ask that the specific delay suffered by the renewal of the fleet be quantified, “which could exceed two years due to the need to design and build new trains that can operate on all stretches, after the error in the measurement of the gauges that prevent their passage through the tunnels”.
“To purify responsibilities, the cessation of the political positions responsible for this decision must take place and it is not enough with the departure of the technical team that worked on the contracting of the new machinery,” they point out.
Balseiro recalled that in recent years complaints about deficiencies in this line have multiplied “and that they do not come only from the passengers of this railway service and from the representatives of the municipalities that it runs through, but also from the workers themselves, who They denounce cuts in personnel and in network maintenance and modernization tasks”
“The reality is that today we are witnessing a progressive dismantling of this service: the schedules and frequencies suppressed by the Ministry during the pandemic have not been recovered and they are incapable of planning reinforcements in times of greatest demand, such as it can be summer or holidays, causing discomfort due to lack of space”, he added.
Added to this, they indicate, are the “multiple” breakdowns suffered by the service and the political decision to stop providing services such as freight transport, which operated for the aluminum company Alcoa.
Lastly, Balseiro has called for “a broader future commitment to this line, which involves drawing up a long-term plan that includes the technical characteristics and the necessary investments to electrify the entire metric-gauge railway line that operates in Galicia, within a reasonable period of time, and with the conditions that allow passenger traffic to be intensified and improved and merchandise traffic restored”.