Over 30 people killed in accidents since national holiday kicked off
ISTANBUL – Anadolu Agency
AA photoAt least 32 people have died and many others have been injured in traffic accidents occurring throughout Turkey in the last three days as scores of people hit the roads for the nine-day Eid holiday that started on July 2.
A total of three people were killed and 26 people were injured in accidents that took place on July 4, and some 22 people were killed and 144 others were injured in accidents occurring on July 3.
Five people were killed in a major accident in the northwestern province of Bolu on July 2, a law enforcement official said.
An articulated truck carrying paint-thinner burst into flames after it crashed into a guardrail at the entrance to a highway tunnel near Mengen, a town around 170 kilometers north of Ankara, a gendarmerie officer said.
The driver, Cevat Ceylan, 50; three of his daughters, Elif Ceylan, 23; Beyza Nur Ceylan, 22; Ayşe Nur Ceylan, 20; and a relative, Umut Talha Ceylan, 3, lost their lives in the accident. Two people travelling in a car also involved in the accident were injured.
Meanwhile, a 15-kilometer long line of vehicles was formed on the TEM highway in the direction of Ankara due to the accident, with work crews only clearing the road two hours after the accident.
This week marks the Eid al-Fitr to celebrate the end of Ramadan, and people have taken to the highways to spend the vacation with their families or at coastal resorts.
Nationwide holidays in Turkey are usually marred by a spike in the number of road deaths despite prominent warnings from authorities about the dangers of reckless driving.
Seven people were killed and 89 people were wounded in traffic accidents occurring throughout Turkey on the first day of the holiday, with travelers experiencing intense traffic on highways.
Last year, nearly 70 died on Turkey’s roads during Eid al-Fitr.
Meanwhile, drivers who wanted to board ferries to cross the Dardanelles in western Turkey waited for three hours due to a traffic jam in the area that caused a seven-kilometer lineup.
Bus drivers also complained about the situation that is repeated every year.
“I have been waiting here for two hours. In the time that I have waited until now, I could have gone 250 kilometers. Every year we are experiencing this misery. There are no measures,” said a bus driver arriving in Istanbul from the eastern province of Muş. Trucks that were heading to Europe also spent hours in lines at border gates in the western province of Edirne amid lineups of at least seven kilometers long.