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Dramatic increase in switching problems on Sweden’s railways

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Dramatic increase in switching problems on Sweden’s railways
Railways switches in Sundbyberg. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT
07:52 CEST+02:00
Ever feel like train journeys in Sweden have been particularly hard work this year?

It's not just you. According to the Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket) there have been over 7,200 switch failures on the country's railways reported so far in 2018.

That figure isn't far from the number for the entirety of 2017, when almost 9,000 were reported.

READ ALSO: This is the most scenic train journey in Sweden

According to Trafikverket this year's high number of failures is down to a harsh winter followed by fast increases in temperature.

"We won't accept it going this way in any case. We have to be quicker at restoring or fixing (switches)," Bengt Olsson at Trafikverket told SVT.

Internal Trafikverket investigations also show that around 10 percent of Sweden's railroad switches are too old. Replacing them however is both complicated and expensive, and instead new parts are usually added rather than carrying out an entire change.

"That's simply an economic issue," Olsson explained.

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