Nivillac english summary
On the 18th of November, 2003, a refrigerated lorry was driving on the RN 165 dual carriageway in Morbihan, France. It swung first towards the right soft shoulder, then crossed the central divider of the four lane dual-carriageway and collided with an LPG tanker coming towards it.
The collision led to the death of both drivers, and both vehicles caught fire.
After some 20 minutes, the partially filled LPG tank blew up (due to a BLEVE) and caused 13 to be injured.
The technical inquiry required lengthy investigations and led to the identification of the primary cause of the accident. It was due to lack of alertness on the part of the driver of the refrigerated lorry. No anomaly was noted as far as compliance with rules applicable to the carriage of hazardous substances.
Three recommendations were nevertheless submitted, one on fitting devices on industrial vehicles to alert their driver to a drift of the vehicle, one on improving fire behaviour of tanks used to carry hydrocarbons, and one on signage applicable to hazardous substances.