Update, 8:45 a.m. on 5 June 2023: The IT issue was resolved, and trains were likely to begin running again on a limited schedule from 9 a.m.
No trains will run to and from Amsterdam on Monday morning, rail manager ProRail reported on its website. “Unfortunately, the IT Malfunction at the ProRail traffic control post has not yet been resolved.”
The cause of the malfunction is not yet known, a ProRail spokesperson said. The railway manager, therefore, cannot say when train traffic will start again. “At least not in the morning. What happens next, we can’t predict.”
Resetting the systems did not help, ProRail said. “We are diligently looking for the cause, which is very difficult to find.” The spokesperson called the fact that the cause is still unknown “extremely annoying. The impact is massive.”
The rail manager called on travelers to avoid coming to Amsterdam and the surrounding area. “Because no trains are running to and from Amsterdam this morning either,” ProRail said. “The advice to these travelers is to arrange alternative transport for the trip to school or work or, for example, to work from home.”
The malfunction at the traffic control center in Amsterdam occurred late afternoon on Sunday and was resolved for a short time but returned in the evening. As a result, no trains ran to and from Amsterdam and Schiphol Airport station for a large part of the evening and all night. Also, due to the disruption in Amsterdam, no train traffic was possible to and from Utrecht Central Station overnight. The Utrecht trains were running again on Monday morning.
About a hundred travelers got stranded at Utrecht Central Station due to the train failure. Overnight shelter was arranged for them in the nearby Jaarbeurs.
In Amsterdam, several hundred attendees to a Harry Styles concert in the Johan Cruijff ArenA had to wait for hours after the show for alternative transport home. They could wait in the Ziggo Dome, where there was water, a place to sit, and the option to charge their phones.
“We still have to wait a very long time, and we have to travel very far,” 18-year-old Resa and Lieske, who have to return to Leeuwarden, told ANP around 1:00 a.m. Despite the problems, they had a great time, they said.
For several others, the evening was a bit ruined. “We’re here until at least 2:30 a.m.,” said two girls who came from Belgium. They also faced delays on their way to the concert and arrived just in time for the show. 18-year-old Isa and 16-year-old Tess also have to go to school on Monday.
“We have to go to Breukelen, and there are simply no trains,” said a 42-year-old woman. “But I’m not going to school tomorrow,” added her 17-year-old daughter.
A few other waiting fans said they had left the concert earlier to catch the train. “And then we saw that they had fallen out. So we just missed the end of Harry Styles for nothing, and we’re bummed about that.”
NS regrets inconvenience
“NS and ProRail regret that we were unable to bring many travelers home last night, and they had to spend the night at the station. This is not what travelers should expect from us,” NS said about the major malfunction. “We find all this extremely annoying for our travelers. This disruption also has a major impact on other parts of the country.”
NS announced overnight that using buses on the routes was impossible “due to the number of people.” The company suggested travelers try arranging alternative transport via the #treinpoolen hashtag. At 6:30 a.m., people were gradually asking for a lift or offering a place in the back seat under this hashtag.
Reporting by ANP