Monday morning commuters trapped in Madrid metro

Posted Nov 25, 2013 by Anne Sewell
While the fact that it was Monday morning was quite bad enough, at 9:40 a.m. Madrid time, one of the subway trains on Madrid metro line 5 ground to a halt for over an hour-and-a-half, trapping the commuters inside, sometimes in the pitch dark.
The Madrid Metro station Rubén Darío (line 5)
The Madrid Metro station Rubén Darío (line 5)
Fernando Carmona
What made it worse was the fact that they were without any air conditioning and sometimes even without light.
At 9:40 a.m. on Monday morning, one of the Metro trains running from the central neighborhood of Chueca to the capital’s main avenue, Gran Vía suffered a technical failure. This failure meant that the carriages, which were full to the brim with commuters on their way to work, lost power, according to the Spanish media.
Huffington Post (in Spanish) reported that as Madrid Metro personnel tried to move the broken down train very slowly toward the Gran Via stop, other trains on Line 5 were also unable to run properly, causing more passengers to be trapped and delayed.
As the temperatures rose in the train carriages, so too did the people's tempers.
Even worse for the irate, and late, passengers was the fact that there were no public announcements to let them know exactly what was happening and what was being done about the problem. Worse still, being down below ground, not all phones could get a signal to phone out.
Those that did manage to get a signal naturally took to Twitter, with some hilarious results. This tweet has been computer-translated from Spanish, but you get the drift:
Sent by an irate but humorous passenger on the Madrid metro.
Sent by an irate but humorous passenger on the Madrid metro.
Twitter screen
Publico (in Spanish) said that after an almost unbearable and very slow 500 meter trip, the train doors finally opened allowing the passengers out, with one lady requiring medical attention for an anxiety attack.
The technical problems and lock-in couldn't have happened at a worse time, as the subway is currently being criticized by commuters for the drop in the quality of service, lack of air conditioning and a rise in ticket prices.
Reportedly services were finally returned completely to normal at 11:25 a.m.