SNCF officials said a train from Hendaye, a popular tourist destination on the border with Spain, was carrying around 1,000 vacationers to Paris when electrical problems stopped it in the remote Landes region. Officials say those passengers were transferred to another train bound for Bordeaux in the middle of the night.
Four high-speed trains connecting Bordeaux to other cities in the region were also stranded on the tracks overnight, causing delays on other routes.
Frustrated travelers posted images on social media of children sleeping on the floor and described the challenges of wearing face masks for 20 straight hours. French media reported that several people had been evacuated for medical reasons.
SNCF’s strategic crisis director, Jérôme Attou, told reporters in Bordeaux that authorities are still inspecting the tracks and catenaries – power lines that provide electricity to trains – and putting the network back in working order. Attou said he expected trains to run normally on Tuesday.
Young French transport minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari said all passengers would be reimbursed three times the price of their tickets.