Madrid, Feb 20 (EFE) and Urban Agenda, Isabel Pardo de Vera.
This was confirmed this Monday to Efe by Ministry sources, who add that their replacements will be appointed this Tuesday in the Council of Ministers and assure that both Taboas and Pardo de Vera have resigned from their posts and that the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Agenda Urbana, Raquel Sánchez, has accepted their resignations.
However, sources close to both point out that, in reality, in the case of Pardo de Vera -who was president of Adif when the trains were contracted- it is a dismissal, while the president of Renfe submitted his resignation in writing before the social alarm generated by a defect that was not properly managed when it was detected.
The head of Transport has transferred her recognition and gratitude to both of them for the work carried out in their respective positions, as reported today by the Ministry, to add that the replacement will allow the launch of “a change”, with which they want to start “a new stage”, both in the Secretary of State and in the railway operator.
AFTER THE DISMISSAL OF “TWO GENTLEMEN WHO PASSED THROUGH”
These departures occur two weeks after the railway infrastructure manager, Adif, dismissed the head of Track Inspection and Technology and Renfe did the same with the head of Material Management.
The PP, among others, criticized that decision, saying that “two gentlemen who were passing through” had been dismissed, and claimed that of Pardo de Vera for being president of Adif at that time.
In addition, today’s departures are known hours before the minister meets this afternoon with the presidents of Asturias and Cantabria, Adrián Barbón and Miguel Ángel Revilla, respectively, to explain how the situation is after the errors in the measurements of the trains contracted, which will cause a delay in their manufacture of two years.
At the beginning of February, it was announced that the manufacture of the 31 metric gauge trains awarded by Renfe to CAF in 2020, to renew the fleet that provides Cercanías and Media Distancia services in Asturias, Cantabria, the Basque Country, Galicia, Castilla y León and Murcia, was going to be delayed due to a problem in its design.
Renfe contracted these trains in 2020 with erroneous measurements for the tunnels of the metric gauge network (formerly Feve) and, once the problem was detected, solutions began to be sought, ruling out the application of standard gauges, since trains would be built with dimensions smaller than those of the current ones and, therefore, too small for the benefits that were sought.
THE COMPARATIVE METHOD
Finally, the so-called “comparative method” was chosen, included in the European standard EN 15273, which consists of using a train that currently runs on metric gauge lines as a reference.
Although the use of this method in Spain was already compatible with the current ministerial order (OM) of 2015 approving the “Instrucción ferroviaria de gálibos” (IFG), the Ministry modified its text last Saturday to explicitly include the reference to said European standard.
The comparative method “will make it possible to optimize the design and use of the cross section available in the metric gauge network”, according to the Ministry, which has insisted that no train has been manufactured, since the “inconsistencies” were detected in the first phases of the design of the new units, and that “not a single Spanish euro has been wasted”.
The president of Cantabria has criticized not only that the award was made “without measuring the trains or the tunnels”, but also that “for two years and a bit they knew it and they have not said anything”; while the one from Asturias has described the situation as “a scandal that admits of no other qualifier than embarrassment and shame.”
Both regional leaders had asked the Minister of Transport to clarify responsibilities