• Sweden's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Viola Beach crash
Crash bridge warning signs 'were not faulty'
Emergency services examining the car wreck. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Crash bridge warning signs 'were not faulty'

The Local · 17 Feb 2016, 16:22

Published: 17 Feb 2016 07:14 GMT+01:00
Updated: 17 Feb 2016 16:22 GMT+01:00

It remained unclear on Wednesday what caused  the bridge accident at Södertälje, near Stockholm, when a car broke through two barriers and plunged off a canal bridge, killing the four members of British indie band Viola Beach and their manager.

Citing a witness, British tabloid The Sun claimed that the warning lights on the bridge were faulty, with some being turned off at the time of the accident. But a representative from road authority Trafikverket told The Local the reports were wrong.

"They have the wrong information. This was an old light which isn't supposed to function. It hasn't been working for three years," said Joachim Jakobsson, who is responsible for Stockholm bridge openings.

He said that the broken sign had long since been replaced with a new one.

"We've put up a new sign with lights, which is working, approximately 900 metres from the bridge opening."

"All the lights are working. We have logs in the bridge system which say that all the signals, all the signs and lights were working, and also the police checked that everything is working around the bridge opening on Monday," he added.


Emergency services at the bridge on Saturday. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

On Tuesday, Swedish road authorities for the first time released still images taken by traffic cameras around the time of the crash early on Saturday.

One of the pictures from Trafikverket's CCTV cameras published by Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet late on Tuesday captures the moment immediately before the accident. The band's car does not appear in the photo from 01.57am, which shows only a quiet bridge without sign of what is about to happen.

The exact time of the accident has not been established, but after looking at damages to the bridge Sjöfartsverket – Sweden's maritime authorities – has suggested the car hit the barriers at around 2am, when the bridge had been raised one-and-a-half to two metres to allow a vessel to pass underneath.

Another still image shows traffic again driving across the bridge at 2.17am. By then, the car is already in the water and the ship has passed. This is when the first call came in to the police.

An investigation into the incident is ongoing, but it remains unclear what caused the crash. And video footage from 24-hour CCTV cameras on the bridge was never salvaged by authorities.

“There's rolling tape, but it's not saved automatically. You can rewind the tape 24 hours and save it like that. I can confirmed that that has not been done,” spokesperson Beisi Sundin told Aftonbladet.

Initial reports earlier this week suggested that the bridge was about to shut when Viola Beach passed the barriers, but authorities later confirmed that it was in fact being opened for an oil tanker on its way to Södertälje.

Story continues below…

Swedish broadcaster SVT revealed that crew on board the ship had seen the car fall but believed it was a large chunk of snow dropping from the bridge.

After contacting Sjöfartsverket, which was not yet aware of the accident at the time, they received permission to carry on and ended up sailing right above the wreckage.

The Swedish Accident Investigation Authority, the top national agency in charge of heading inquiries on fatal accidents, said on Tuesday that it was considering opening a probe into the crash.

"The information we have seen does not indicate that there was anything wrong with the bridge, but we've only seen that information in the media. So now we're going to get the basic facts so that we can decide whether to go ahead or not," spokesperson Johan Gustafsson told SVT.

For more news from Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Today's headlines
Sweden's Spotify hits 39 million subscribers
Spotify is gaining listeners. Photo: Erik Mårtensson/TT

Spotify has grown by nine million paying subscribers in five months, fending off competition from rivals.

Prosecutor wants asylum stabber convicted of murder
Prosecutor Linda Wiking. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT

The man was convicted of aggravated manslaughter for stabbing a worker to death at a home for young refugees in Sweden.

Old Swedish cash worth billions still in circulation
Old Swedish money. Photo: Micke Larsson/TT

Hand in your invalid Swedish bills to the bank by the end of the month.

Sweden moves to battle high rate of drug deaths
Sweden has among Europe's highest drug-induced mortality rates. Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum/NTB/TT

Sweden has among the highest number of drug-related deaths in the EU despite its zero-tolerance policy. The government wants to find out why.

Human skeleton found on abandoned farm in Sweden
Police at the farm in Hörby. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect human remains found in a well on an abandoned farm in rural Sweden belonged to a man who was murdered.

The Local List
You'll never really be Swedish without trying this weird food
Kebab pizza. It exists. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The Local's intern Saina Behnejad on her love-hate relationship with Swedish cuisine.

Sweden's Stenson pulls out of Barclays with injured knee
Henrik Stenson at the Olympics this summer. Photo: AP Photo/Alastair Grant

Henrik Stenson's injury throws doubt on Europe's chances at next month's Ryder Cup.

The Local Recipes
How to make this delicious Swedish crayfish pasta
Swedish crayfish pasta. Photo: John Duxbury/Swedish Food

Combine the Swedish favourite of crayfish with pasta to impress with this simple yet tasty dish.

Drunken Christmas goat burner risks four years in jail
The Christmas goat looks at the fireworks and contemplates its future. Photo: Mats Åstrand/TT

His singed eyebrows were a dead giveaway.

Joe Biden: 'Sweden has shown great leadership'
Joe Biden, left, and Stefan Löfven. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

US Vice President Joe Biden praised Sweden for "punching way above its weight" in the global refugee crisis.

Sponsored Article
Malmö to host global skateboard championship
Travel
What are Sherpas doing on Sweden's highest mountain?
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Gallery
People-watching: August 24th
The Local Voices
'I want to be a businesswoman but I don’t care about money'
Blog updates

23 August

A Summer in Sweden (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"For our first year here in Sweden we decided to have all our holidays in Sweden.…" READ »

 

22 July

After the horror, carry on regardless (Globally Local) »

"This time last week, we were just digesting the horror of the Nice killings, in which…" READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
The mystique of Asia - in the middle of Stockholm
National
Experts: Gothenburg grenade blast is 'part of a cycle of violence'
Sponsored Article
Why you should learn to trade (and just how easy it is)
Gallery
Property of the week: Karlsborg
National
Why Sweden could change its criticised detention laws
National
Watch this dog's reaction when she tries Swedish fermented herring
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Gallery
People-watching: August 19th-21st
Sponsored Article
'Sweden's Lauryn Hill' touches the country's musical soul
National
How to find student housing in Sweden
National
VIDEO: Swede films first Northern Lights of the season
Sponsored Article
6 simple travel hacks that will make your life easier
Gallery
People-watching: August 17th
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Society
Swedish population nears ten million
The Local Voices
This Syrian artist found love in a Swedish library
Sponsored Article
Five easy ways to travel more often
National
Sex pigs halt traffic after laser attack on Pokémon teens. Only in Sweden.
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Gallery
Property of the week: Hammarby Sjöstad, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Society
Drunk knight detained in Stockholm
National
Can you solve this Swede's strange Star Wars mystery?
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Gallery
People-watching: August 12th-14th
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
National
Swedes cheer first snow of the season
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
Gallery
People-watching: August 10th
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
The Local Voices
Syrian presenter: Swedish media should make more shows in Arabic
Sponsored Article
6 simple travel hacks that will make your life easier
Travel
Watch the meteor shower in Sweden
Lifestyle
How to survive a crayfish party
The Local Voices
Gabriel mastered Swedish and got accepted onto a medicine degree in just 7 months
3,395
jobs available