A13 French motorway near Paris closed until at least May 1

Further tests must be carried out before repairs can begin. Traffic jams reached 400km long around Paris on Monday

Authorities are hoping the road will be reopened as quickly as possible

The A13 motorway will be closed until at least May 1 with the results of further tests awaited before vital repairs can begin. 

Further structural tests on an overpass – where a large crack appeared last week – must be carried out to check certain foundations are stable before repairs to the retaining wall (mur de soutènement) can begin on April 26. 

A 5km stretch of the motorway, which links Paris and Normandy and is one of the busiest around the capital, was closed last Thursday (April 18). 

More than 400km of cumulative traffic was measured around the capital on Monday (April 22) morning – significantly higher than usual – with much of this caused by the A13 closure. 

Similar amounts of traffic are expected until the road reopens.

The affected section is between the commune of Vaucresson and the Saint-Cloud tunnel, close to the capital, on an overpass.

“The first works to repair the carriageway and protect the hydraulic structure could be undertaken by the end of the week,” said the Hauts-de-Seine prefecture (the works are located within the department’s borders.)

“Under these conditions, the A13 could be reopened to traffic from Wednesday 1 May," it added. 

However, if the structural tests come back with different readings, this re-opening date may be pushed back. 

Further information will be given on Friday (April 26) regarding the calendar for repairs and possible reopening date. 

Read more: Update: France’s A13 motorway closed for days, huge traffic jams

Authorities scramble to reopen road 

The beginning of the week saw heavy traffic at rush hour in the capital due to the closure of the road. 

Roads around Saint-Cloud – which drivers were using as an alternate route – faced long queues.

Read more: Ways to avoid queues at motorway tolls in France

The Hauts-de-Seine prefecture said that five companies were working on the stretch of road over the weekend. 

This included those carrying out tests on the structure and foundation of the motorway, as well as preliminary repair works to both stop water entering the crack and backfilling.