‘Minister did not admit full extent of winter railway problems’

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Problems on the railways during the recent cold snap were more serious than transport minister Melanie Schultz admitted to parliament, the Volkskrant reports on Wednesday, quoting NS documents.


Heavy snow at the beginning of February led to large parts of the railway network closing down. The minister told parliament this was due to problems with 23 sets of points ‘which influenced services’ on the first day and 39 on the second.
However, an internal evaluation by Dutch Rail (NS) focused on 662 ‘infrastructure disturbances’, mainly broken points, the Volkskrant says.
A spokesman for the minister told the paper she had only referred to problems which directly affected services. However, Roel Berghuis, of railway union FNV Spoor, told the paper Schultz was trying to protect herself and the NS by misleading MPs.
MPs have called on the minister to restate her position.

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