Eurotunnel criticised over blaze

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The Independent Online
Eurotunnel criticised over blaze

Eurotunnel's handling of the Channel Tunnel fire last November is expected to be criticised in an official report today.

The Channel Tunnel Safety Authority document will examine Eurotunnel's response to the blaze on a freight shuttle train. Thirty lorry drivers needed hospital treatment after being trapped in a fume-filled compartment 12 miles out from the French coast.

Last month, in its own inquiry, Eurotunnel admitted there were "avoidable delays" in tackling the emergency on the night of 18 November. But it ruled out mechanical or system failure as a reason for the blaze which damaged a 600-metre section of tunnel.

Company chiefs announced a number of new safety measures, including smokehoods for passengers and crew; more fire suppression systems in the tunnel and new electronic devices to show precisely where a train has stopped.