Six injured as drunk driver stops on motorway

Six people were injured in a car crash near Frankfurt on Saturday morning after a drunk driver stopped his car on the side of a motorway for a toilet break.

Six injured as drunk driver stops on motorway
The crash happened on the A3 near the Frankfurter Kreuz interchange. Photo: DPA

The 29-year-old Frenchmen, who police described as drunk, was driving on the A3 towards Würzburg and was near the Frankfurter Kreuz interchange when he pulled up on the hard shoulder to relieve himself at 3am.

After he stopped and got out, the Opel Vectra behind him, carrying a family-of-five, drove into the back of his Opel Zafira causing €18,000 worth of damage, Frankfurt Police said in a statement on Sunday.

The Zafira, carrying three passengers, was catapulted across three lanes and smashed into a concrete wall. One passenger was severely injured and taken to hospital with head injuries. The other two passengers escaped unharmed.

The family-of-five, including a four-year-old child and a 15-year-old boy, all suffered minor injuries and were also taken to hospital.

Police tested the unharmed drunk driver for alcohol and found he had a blood alcohol level of 1.36 percent. The limit is 0.5 percent if you are involved in a crash. His driving licence was confiscated. 

The motorway was closed while the debris was cleared.

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Emergency numbers fail in several German states

Callers to the emergency numbers 110 and 112 weren’t able to reach operators Thursday morning in several German states.

The 112 emergency number on an ambulance.
The 112 emergency number on an ambulance. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Boris Roessler

The emergency number 110 for police and 112 for fire crews failed around the country early Thursday morning, with callers unable to reach emergency operators for urgent assistance between about 4:30 am and 5:40 am local time.

The Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Aid is looking into these outages, which were reported in states including Lower Saxony, Baden-Württemberg, and  Brandenburg, and in major cities like Berlin, Cologne, Hamburg, and Frankfurt. Cologne was further affected by cuts to electricity, drinking water, and regular telephone services. Lower Saxony also saw disruptions to the internal phone networks of police and hospitals.

Emergency services are not reporting any more disturbances and people should be able to once again reach 110 and 112 around the country as normal.

Investigators are looking into the problem, but haven’t yet established a cause or any consequences that may have happened due to the outage. Provider Deutsche Telekom says they have ruled out the possibility of an attack by hackers.