Driver mistakes Paris metro for parking entrance

A driver looking for a parking lot drove down a staircase into a Paris metro stop. Fortunately, nobody was hurt. 

“There was a sign indicating ‘Parking Haussman Grands Magasins’ here, and there wasn’t anything blocking the way, so it was confusing. Luckily nobody was climbing the stairs,” 26-year-old driver Johan, told daily Ouest-France. 

Watch the film of the car blocked inside the metro entrance here

Johan was driving slowly into the Chaussée d’Antin-Lafayette metro entrance and was able to brake rapidly. The tyres of his car were also blocked in the stairs and Johan left his vehicle easily. 

A witness says he was astonished to see a car enter the metro stop, daily France Soir reports. “We saw a vehicle drive up to the metro stop. We just looked at the driver thinking ‘he’s not going to do it, is he?'” says Julien “Then, well, he started driving down the staircase.”

Julien says he found the incident “quite funny” but was relieved the car was driving slowly.

An employee of a restaurant nearby told the AFP newswire that a similar incident had happened four or five years ago.

An alcohol test performed on the driver showed that he had not been drinking.

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Revealed: The fastest way to get across Paris

Car, moped, public transport, or electric bicycle - which means of transport is the quickest way to get across Paris?

Revealed: The fastest way to get across Paris

One intrepid reporter for French daily Le Parisien decided to find out. 

The challenge was simple. Which mode of transport would get the journalist from the heart of Fontenay-sous-Bois in the eastern suburbs to the newspaper’s office on Boulevard de Grenelle, west Paris, fastest?

Over four separate journeys, each one in the middle of rush hour, the electric bicycle was quickest and easiest. More expensive than conventional bikes, electric bikes do come with a government subsidy.

The journey was described as ‘pleasant and touristy’ on a dry but chilly morning going via dedicated cycle lanes that meant the dogged journalist avoided having to weave in and out of traffic.

It took, in total, 47 minutes from start to finish at an average speed of 19km/h, on a trip described as “comfortable” but with a caveat for bad weather. The cost was a few centimes for charging up the bike.

In comparison, a car journey between the same points took 1 hour 27 minutes – a journey not helped by a broken-down vehicle. Even accounting for that, according to the reporter’s traffic app, the journey should – going via part of the capital’s southern ringroad – have taken about 1 hr 12.

Average speed in the car was 15km/h, and it cost about €2.85 in diesel – plus parking.

A “chaotic and stressful” moped trip took 1 hour 3 minutes, and cost €1.30 in unleaded petrol.

Public transport – the RER and Metro combined via RER A to Charles-de-Gaulle-Étoile then Metro line 6 to the station Bir-Hakeim – took 50 minutes door to door, including a 10-minute walk and cost €2.80. The journey was described as “tiring”.

READ ALSO 6 ways to get around Paris without the Metro