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Sunday, May 22, 2022

Train tunnel to close this summer

Commuters in the Oslo area got the bad news on Tuesday that the key train tunnel under the city will be shut down for an entire month this summer, in connection with rehabilitation work. That means more distruption, and transfers to a bus service.

Train travel has amounted to a nightmare for most commuters throughout the winter. Near constant signal failures, shortages of equipment, inability to deal with snow and ice, and breakdowns have left even the most ardent train fans disillusioned.

The government has been promising improvements but not much as been seen yet. Now the state agency in charge of railroad infrastructure, Jernbaneverket, says it needs to close the Oslo Tunnel from July 10 to August 9, twice as long as the time initially thought needed to conduct repairs.

There will be no train service from the Oslo central station west to the Lysaker station, meaning disruptions on lines through the area including the one to Bergen, popular with summer tourists. 

There is no question the tunnel is in dire need of attention. There have been repeated breakdowns inside the tunnel and just a few weeks ago, early-morning commuters were stuck inside the tunnel for more than two hours after an overhead cable fell down on a train and stranded it.

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