National Road Company sued over closed Transfagarasan alpine road

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Several travel agencies in Arges have sued the National Road Company (CNAIR) asking that a sector of the DN7-Transfagarasan road to be opened earlier after winter. The road usually stays closed including in June every year.

The lawsuit has been initiated early this month and is based on the discontent of more tour operators in the county over the fact that tourists cannot reach the accommodation units in the area because the CNAIR maintains the road closed.

According to ziarulargeș, although there is no much snow left in the region, CNAIR has set up a barrier in the area of Capra Chalet, thus blocking the access of hundreds of tourists who are coming to spend the weekend on Transfagarasan or who wanted to at least reach the Capra Waterfall to admire the epic view of the area. The source also notes that the National Meteorology Institute has stopped issuing bad weather alerts as of early May, which proves that there are no more dangers.

The travel agencies consider the prolonged closure of the famous alpine road is „an insult against citizens” and it affects the local tourism.

The tour operators are asking the court to Ok the partial amendment of the regulation that recommends the traffic is closed between km 104 (Piscul Negru) and km 130 (Balea Waterfall) during November 1-June 30.

Transfagarasan or DN7C is a mountain paved road crossing the southern section of the Carpathian Mountains. It has national-road ranking and it is the second-highest paved road in Romania after Transalpina. The road starts near the village of Bascov, located near the city of Pitesti, ending on the crossroad between DN1 and Sibiu.

Also known as Ceausescu’s Folly, it was built as a strategic military route that stretches 90 km with twists and turns that run north to south across the tallest sections of the Southern Carpathians, between the highest peaks in the country, Moldoveanu, and the second highest, Negoiu. The road connects the historic regions of Transylvania and Wallachia and the cities of Sibiu and Pitesti.

The Transfagarasan was constructed between 1970 and 1974, during Nicolae Ceausescu’s communist rule as a response to the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet Union.

Built mainly by military forces, the road had both a high financial and human cost. Work was carried out in an alpine climate, at an elevation of 2000 meters, using junior military personnel who were untrained in blasting techniques. Many non-commissioned officers (NCOs), foremen, and soldiers died due to hazardous working conditions. Roughly six million kilograms of dynamite were used on the northern face, and official records state that about 40 soldiers lost their lives in building accidents.

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