Thousands of rail travelers were shocked to discover on Wednesday morning that service on the northern coast between Herzliya and Binyamina was suspended due to repairs to bridges along the section, Globes reported.
Although Israel Railways had announced the disruption beforehand, efforts to make sure the public was informed were apparently insufficient.
Many commuters and other passengers on southbound trains headed for Tel Aviv had to disembark at Binyamina, while northbound passengers on their way to Haifa had to get off at Tel Aviv, and then try to find an alternative route on the spot.
As a Rehovot resident said, “I’ve been taking the train for ten years. I did not know that the lines would be closed, and now I have to take either a bus or pay hundreds of shekels for a taxi.”
The tracks will be closed until 4 a.m. on Sunday. The Beit Yehoshua, Netanya, Hadera West, and Caesarea-Pardess Hannah train stations are closed.
Egged has reportedly increased the number of buses along the affected routes, including lines 900 and 910 between Haifa and Tel Aviv, line 872 between Tel Aviv and Hadera, and line 605 between Tel Aviv and Netanya.
Israel Railways officials explained that work is being done on three bridges along the coast. The work is to be completed by early Sunday morning, they said.
They explained that the shutdown was scheduled for July because there are fewer train travelers in the summer months.