New fire alarm team to prevent train delays in Schiphol tunnel

An NS train waiting on the tracks (Photo: TahR78/Wikipedia)
An NS train waiting on the tracks (Photo: TahR78/Wikipedia). (An NS train waiting on the tracks (Photo: TahR78/Wikipedia))

ProRail established a special team to check all fire alarms that go off in the Schiphol tunnel. The rail operator hopes that this team will help stop fire alarms in the tunnel leading to chaos and hours-long delays on the track in the Randstad area, ANP reports.

Fire detectors in the tunnel often sound alarm over small and relatively harmless incidents, bringing train traffic to a stand still while the alarm is investigated. According to ProRail, the new team will check out what is going on within 10 minutes of an alarm and solve the problems themselves as far as possible. 

ProRail is also changing the procedure around a fire alarm in the tunnel. Currently a smoke or fire alarm means that trains are immediately halted and all four tunnel lanes are closed. From now on trains will be allowed to slowly move towards the airport, according to the news wire. 

According to ProRail, the tunnel closing immediately causes delays for around 50 thousand travelers in the Randstad.