Cars will return to the heat-damaged D35 highway between Přáslavice and Velký Újezd in the Olomouc Region in four days at the earliest. That is how long it is estimated to take to repair the road where a mass collision occurred on Saturday afternoon. Police spokesman Libor Hejtman told Právo on Sunday.
The accident of four cars and one truck occurred before 15:00 on the 286 km of the motorway in the direction from Olomouc to Ostrava, where the concrete surface of the road cracked and rippled due to the heat, according to the Road and Motorway Directorate.
According to a police spokesman, the accident was caused by a forty-four-year-old female driver of a Seat Leon vehicle who failed to adjust her speed to the condition and surface of the road and did not pay sufficient attention to the driving and traffic ahead.
“The high temperatures caused damage to the surface, to which the vehicles responded by slowing down to a stop. The driver overlooked this situation and at the last moment, while driving in the left lane, she jerked the steering of the vehicle to the left, but did not manage to avoid the Skoda Yeti in front of her sufficiently and crashed into it. This vehicle was thrown into the right-hand lane as a result of the impact, where it struck another car. During her evasive manoeuvre, the driver further hit the steel barriers and the stationary Škoda Superb and Hyundai vehicles,” Hejtman described the collision to Právo.
Ten people ended up in the care of the ambulance service after the accident. “These were minor injuries,” Zdeněk Hošák, a spokesman for the Olomouc Region Fire and Rescue Service, told Právo. The injured were taken to the University Hospital in Olomouc. Five children were among the injured.
Police officers have provisionally estimated the damage caused by the collision at CZK 1 225 000. “Breath tests for alcohol were negative for all drivers,” Hejtman noted.
Police first closed the section of the motorway from Olomouc to Ostrava, then in the opposite direction. “The section between 281 km (EXIT Přáslavice) and 290 km (EXIT Velký Újezd) was first closed in the direction to Ostrava. About two hours after the accident, the motorway section to Olomouc was also closed. The D35 motorway in the section between 281 km and 290 km is currently completely closed in both directions,” a police spokesman said on Sunday.
A detour route is marked under it and is routed to the II/437 road via the villages of Přáslavice, Kocourovec and Daskabát. “The closure of the section is estimated to take at least four days,” the hetman added. The section of the D35 motorway between Přáslavice and Velky újezd was opened in autumn 1997.