This caused a runaway engine and then its conflagration, the prosecution reported on Wednesday.
According to the Valence prosecutor, Alex Perrin, a seizure or a breakage of the turbo caused the engine to runaway causing an oil leak, which would have caused the fire. From that moment on, it was almost impossible for the driver to stop, since the engine problem made the braking system and the power steering inoperative. The driver had mentioned a braking problem before losing consciousness.
For its part, the Departmental Road Safety Squadron (EDSR) Isère – to which the investigation was entrusted – specified that the vehicle dated from 2005. According to him, a technical check should have been carried out last May, but following the confinement, the State granted a modification of the deadlines making this control compulsory in the fall. “So there is no subject on technical control, no offense on it”, said the EDSR.
The accident on Monday evening struck nine members of a family from Vénissieux, in the Lyon suburbs, and the Paris region, aboard a minivan which caught fire before making an exit from the road and then several barrels in a field near the town of Albon.
In addition to the five children aged 3 to 14 who died, four other family members, other people are currently being taken care of in hospitals in Lyon. She is the 41-year-old driver’s companion, 34-year-old sister-in-law and a seven-year-old child. The driver’s state of health is less worrying.