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QUOTE (Oakydoke @ 22 Nov 2007, 14:50) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>As Eurostars consist of two half sets with independent power, a certain amount of redundancy is built in.
A failed unit would remain powered by the other half. Mechanical failure preventing movement would be another matter, but would equally apply to any train.
A failure in the tunnel that meant the train was stuck, would probably lead to splitting the set with passengers being moved into the working half. Other than that it may be an evacuation? I believe they periodically rehearse this?

Could it be that reliabilty figures demonstrate that dedicated "Thunderbirds" along HS1 are not required?

The Eurostar is indeed built as two independent half-trains, and I think one is able to haul or propel the other dead on the steepest gradient. However loss of traction power would cripple the whole train.

I presume the reason the existing rescue locomotives are no longer used is that they lack the signalling equipment to run onto the high speed line. The French have some diesels with this equipment but as far as I know there are none in the UK. So I don't know what would happen in the event of a traction power failure.
 
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