The parents and their one and a half year old child drove their car onto the bridge around 5 pm, while it opened to allow a ship to pass in the Leuven fairway. Whether they ignored the barriers or whether there was a technical error must be clear from camera images, says the Vlaamse Waterweg, the manager of the bridge. “Of course we regret the incident and express our condolences to the family,” said spokesman Carolien Peelaerts.
Bystanders watched as the couple stayed in the car with the toddler as the bridge went up. The car eventually fell backwards from the bridge onto the barriers.
The occupants were trapped in the car and were freed by the Leuven fire brigade. The three family members were taken to hospital for further care. Miraculously, the occupants only suffered minor injuries,” a police spokesperson confirmed.
How the accident could have happened and whether the driver ignored the barriers or if there was a technical fault is not yet known.
“We are investigating how this could have happened,” Carolien Peelaerts of the public Flemish Waterway company said.