Car stuck after driver confuses Métro with car park

Finding a parking space in Toulouse is never easy, but one driver found it more difficult than most when she confused the entrance to an underground car park with that of the city’s Métro.

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The woman, who is in her fifties and originally from Landes, gave herself a fright when she drove her Peugeot 208 down a very steep stairwell leading to the Toulouse Jeanne d’Arc Métro station at around 19.00 on Monday, reported local newspaper La Dépêche du Midi.

The Métro station, which is in the city centre on the Boulevard de Strasbourg, shares a name with the Jeanne d’Arc public car park, which is also accessed via an underground tunnel nearby (although one slightly more suitable for vehicles).

It is not clear whether the error came from a GPS navigation system that confused the Métro with the car park of the same name, or whether it was the driver herself who made the initial mistake.

The driver was not injured - although she was reportedly panicked and distressed by her error, and sat in the car quietly for a long time, unsure what to do. It was only when security guards noticed abnormal behaviour on the CCTV system, and realised that a huge traffic jam had formed, that the emergency services were called.

The driver was then able to be rescued by firefighters relatively easily, and the car - which had its two back tyres hanging in the air due to the steep angle of the stairwell - was then dislodged with little damage, but not before many Twitter users and local passers-by remarked on the unusual mistake.