Cap d’Ail petrol station closed indefinitely after falling rock hits car

The TotalEnergies petrol station on the Moyenne Corniche in Cap d’Ail has been closed after a piece of rock broke free from a cliff above and smashed into an unsuspecting vehicle.  

The dramatic cliff side above the Total station reminded one unlucky motorist on the morning of Wednesday 23rd August that nature can be unpredictable.  

A piece of rock came loose, ricocheting down the hill and smashing into a car parked near the fuel station’s car wash. It reportedly collided with the driver’s side of the vehicle, but fortunately the owner of the car wasn’t inside at the time and no one was hurt.  


There is no word on when the station will be reopened, as it will be necessary to secure the area to ensure no more incidents like this occur, but there is little chance there will be a fast fix. 

This task has fallen to the Syndicat à Vocation Multiple (SIVOM), according to Cap d’Ail’s Mayor Xavier Beck and as reported by Monaco Matin, who will determine the stability of the cliff as well as to remove any other partially dislodged pieces of rock that may break free in future. 

The primary theory behind why the rock may have broken free is that the latest round of heatwaves has caused stress in the area. The land, like humans, suffers in extreme conditions, causing unexpected events such as this to happen.  

TotalEnergies, which runs the service station, will need to present a dossier to the Cap d’Ail town hall with a clear picture of how the company intends to shore up the cliff side following assessment of the situation by SIVOM. This could include the installation of netting as well as securing the surrounding areas.


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Photo credit: Engin Akyurt, Unsplash