Geneva-Lausanne rail services to run normally again from Friday

Geneva-Lausanne rail services to run normally again from Friday

Fri, Nov 10th 2023

SBB intends to resume rail services between Geneva and Lausanne according to the normal timetable on Friday morning. This had been completely interrupted for a time on Thursday night due to a serious incident during construction work at Renens VD station.

Empty train platforms due to canceled trains, this Thursday, November 9, 2023 at Cornavin Station in Geneva. No more CFF trains run between Geneva and Lausanne. A technical breakdown at Renens station seriously disrupts rail traffic on the Lemanic arc. The Lausanne-Geneve/Yverdon lines are interrupted (KEYSTONE/Martial Trezzini)

As the SBB Regional Director for Western Switzerland, David Fattebert, told the media at Lausanne station on Thursday, eight large cable lines were damaged during drilling work. The damage to the cables caused the control of signals and points in Renens to fail.

SBB announced on Thursday afternoon that around 30 specialists were repairing the cables. Once these repairs are complete, tests will be carried out. It should be possible to resume normal service on Friday morning.

On Thursday morning, SBB initially assumed that operations would be interrupted for the whole day. However, at 10.45 a.m. they were able to resume direct connections between Geneva and Lausanne with two trains per hour in each direction.

Regional services were maintained by replacement buses between Renens and Morges and between Lausanne and Yverdon-les-Bains, as well as trains on some routes. Passengers had to put up with delays of up to an hour. The cause of the drilling error is under investigation.

Traffic jams on Lausanne’s roads

The rail disruption caused traffic jams on the roads in the morning, particularly in the Lausanne catchment area. The City of Geneva’s transport services suspended line 9 and made the vehicles used there available to SBB as replacement buses.

The incident in Renens occurred exactly two years to the day after a track subsidence in Tolochenaz VD, which first stopped rail traffic between Geneva and Lausanne and then disrupted it for several days.

The Geneva-Lausanne line is one of the busiest in Switzerland. It is also one of the most vulnerable because there are no alternative routes. A new nine-kilometre tunnel between Morges and Perroy should provide a remedy by 2040 at the latest.


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