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Railway reopens after Storm Desmond left West Coast Main Line under 2.4m of floodwater two weeks ago

West Coast Main Line

Repairs to a flood-damaged stretch of railway north of Carlisle have enabled the track to reopen to regular speed trains today.

Network Rail’s “orange army” worked round-the-clock since the key section of the West Coast Main Line connecting England with Scotland was completely submerged as Storm Desmond battered the region over the weekend of 5 and 6 December.

Two days after the railway was submerged by 2.m of floodwater temporary measures were put in place to allow a small number of trains to run through the area after railway workers removed large amounts of debris and mud and made emergency repairs to the track and infrastructure.

Over the past two weeks engineers have built and fitted six new safety-critical electrical cabinets, installed 4km of signalling cable and undertaken extensive signal testing and commissioning so the 20mph speed can be removed and a full service can run once more.

 

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