A minor two car accident Friday night on the A31 Autobahn turned into a horrific 52 car crash scene, leaving three dead near the town of Gronau close to the border with the Netherlands. Visibility was extremely poor, being reported by local weather stations to be as low as 1/16th of a mile. Some parts of the A31 have unrestricted speed limits, and according to reports, traffic is not usually heavy. The two cars were involved in a harmless fender bender in extremely heavy fog. Both drivers left their cars to reach a safe area behind the guard rail.
The first two fatalities unfortunately occurred when another car flipped over the guard rail, killing the two original drivers. The final death was discovered in a car that had slid down an incline beside the road. The dead are a 44-year-old woman from Cologne, a 28-year-old man from the German town of Nordhorn and a 50-year-old man from Borken, near Winterswijk.
According to police, 35 people were injured. 21 people only sustained light or minor injuries, and 14 were taken to nearby hospitals. Police still aren’t sure what may have triggered the original pileup, and are keeping both directions of the highway closed.