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Stolen cables slow Eurostar trains in France

Published on 10/07/2010

Eurostar trains running from Paris and Brussels to London suffered new delays Saturday after police foiled an attempt to steal cables along a French section of track, rail operator SNCF said.

Police arrested four people on suspicion of trying to steal cables over a kilometre-long (half-mile) distance near Ronchin village. Both signals and the electricity that powers the high-speed trains were affected.

Domestic TGV inter-city services were also affected, with a total of 120 trains experiencing delays averaging 20 minutes, and normal service not expected to resume before late Saturday or Sunday morning.

Only the day before, Eurostar had been working through a backlog of holiday passengers after its London to Paris service was halted for several hours by smoke in the rail tunnel than runs under the Channel.