Fire alert shuts Channel Tunnel

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The Independent Online
The Channel Tunnel was closed for more than an hour yesterday after two separate fire alarms went off within minutes of each other on board freight trains travelling in opposite directions.

Up to 60 passengers had to be evacuated to the service tunnel while the cause of the alarms was investigated and the trains cleared to proceed. Two Eurostar passenger trains, carrying about 200 people, were also held up. An investigation will be launched into why the two alarms were wrongly activated, but a spokesman for Eurotunnel said that it appeared to be "pure coincidence" that they should have gone off so close together. Under new safety procedures introduced following last November's fire within the tunnel, the trains stopped immediately the alarms were sounded.