Seven people lost their lives in road accidents throughout the country last Sunday – a day of unseasonable rainy weather.
The most serious accident left three people from the same family dead and four other people injured in Penacova, after they were involved in a head-on collision between an Audi and a Renault that occurred shortly after noon at São Pedro de Alva on the IC6. The driver of the Renault 4L died instantly, alongside his wife, Ermelinda Coimbra, and his brother-in-law, João Coimbra dos Santos, aged 70. The other passenger, José Oliveira Gonçalves, aged 68, suffered serious injuries. The family had been heading to a party to mark a feast day in São Lourenço.
In the other car were Francisco Madeira, aged 51, his wife, Maria dos Anjos Oliveira Viegas, aged 50, and her daughter, Ana Maria, aged 21, who were driving south, towards their home in Odivelas. All were in a serious condition in Coimbra University Hospital following the accident.
The accident occurred when the Audi skidded off the main road and careered into a parallel road, colliding with the Renault. “It was nobody’s fault – they were simply unlucky enough to be in the wrong place at the wrong time,” commented a Vale da Vinha resident. The commander of Penacova volunteer bombeiros, António Simões, said the accident happened during a period of intensely heavy rain, which made the roads slippery and hazardous.
Other fatal accidents took place in various regions of the country – Coimbra, Abrantes, Mirandela, Vila Franca de Xira, Viseu, Torres Novas and Viseu. The bad weather also caused dozens of accidents and a severe pile-up, involving 14 cars, on the 25 de Abril Bridge in Lisbon.