Report on head-on collision involving two heavy goods vehicles on the E39 road near Flekkefjord on 22 October 2014

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English translation is now available.

On Wednesday 22 October 2014, at approximately 21:00, an eastbound Swedish-registered heavy goods vehicle with a semitrailer was driving the E39 road. In a right-hand bend just after the exit from the Lavoll tunnel, near Flikka in Flekkefjord, the semitrailer started to skid. The left side of the semitrailer hit the front of a Danish-registered heavy goods vehicle driving the opposite lane. This caused extensive deformation of the driver's cab on the Danish vehicle, and the driver of this vehicle was critically injured.

The investigation has shown that there were electrical faults in the braking system on the trailer of the eastbound truck. The faults were strong contributing factors to the accident. The fault was indicated by a yellow lamp visible for the driver.

The investigation has shown that the yellow indication lamp did not inform about the real risk of driving with the faults, and these findings have similarities with other investigations performed by AIBN.

As a result of the investigation the AIBN has given a safety recommendation to NPRA, the manufactor- and vehicle transport industry to improve barriers that can prevent  electronic faults in brakes to contribute to accidents.

Safety recommendation

Safety recommendation ROAD NO 2015/08T

Investigation of the collision involving two heavy goods vehicles on E39 22 October 2014 shows that the antilock brake system (ABS/EBS) on the eastbound unloaded semitrailer was disabled, and that there was contact- and sensor malfunctions in the brake system. The AIBN believes that a yellow light on the driver’s display is a too weak barrier to such serious errors. The AIBN also thinks that the control system has weaknesses in uncovering and preventing driving with such defects.

The Accident Investigation Board Norway recommends that the NPRA, in cooperation with the automotive and transportation industry, review and improve the barriers that may prevent electronic malfunctions in the brake system from contributing to accidents.

The E39 road near Flekkefjord, Vest-Agder county
Occurrence date
Accident type
Head-on collision
Road class
European road
Police Disctrict
Vehicle type
Truck and trailer, Truck and trailer
Type of Transportation
Transfer work/assignment, Freight transport
Road region
Southern Region
Accident category
Ulykke m/ kjøretøy over 7500 kg
Report on head-on collision involving two heavy goods vehicles on the E39 road near Flekkefjord on 22 October 2014 Download report
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