Only in Berlin? I’m not so sure. Remember way back when (getting on two years ago) when the Berliner S-Bahn commuter trains had to go on a Notfahrplan (emergency schedule) bis auf Weiteres (until further notice) because of massive problems they were having with their brakes (they hadn’t been checked or maintained properly)?
Remember then about a year or so later when there was a Not-Notfahrplan (emergency emergency schedule) for the same S-Bahn system when something called “winter” hit?
Well winter has struck yet again and we now have our next Not-Notfahrplan (irregular, 20-minute intervals for the few trains that are still running–about 200 of a 500 fleet) and there’s no end in sight. Two years on, people.
It’s not all that out of the ordinary if you stop to think about it, really. German Baustellen (construction sites) are generally built to last. And to last and to last and to last. And we have to be fair here too when it comes to these difficult winter conditions: Germany isn’t a country that has ever had to deal with things like “snow” in the past, you know–or at least that’s what one must assume.
Personally, I’m confident that these trains will all be up and running on regular schedule next year. In the spring of 2012, I mean.
“Because we can’t remember the hard winters of the 1970s, we resort to the word ‘chaos.'”