It was a day they’ll never forget. American couple Jack and Robin Firestone traveled to Paris during the summer of 1997, around the same time that Princess Diana arrived. While in the City of Light, the tourists stumbled upon the Pont de l’Alma tunnel — seconds after the car crash that killed the Princess of Wales.
“The scene is very vivid even after 20 years,” Robin recalls in episode 8 of the “Fatal Voyage: Diana Case Solved” podcast. “As we entered the tunnel, there was definitely unusual traffic. It was a slowdown. We were trying to peek ahead to see what was coming up, but at the same time, we saw these flashing lights bouncing off of the tiled walls from the interior of the tunnel.”
Up ahead, the couple started seeing “some action and activity,” according to Robin, including a bunch of cars with blacked-out windows, one of which had Diana inside.
“I looked toward the westbound lane and saw this carnage, the metal of the car just crushed like an accordion,” Jack recounts. “I noticed that there were — this was very odd — motorcycles parked very neatly on the median strip, maybe about somewhere from six to 10 motorcycles. That really struck me as odd.”
In the episode, titled “Witness to the Crash,” former homicide detective Colin McLaren explains that “nowhere in any of the official reports into the crash were there two dark, formal cars that Robin mentioned.” McLaren also wonders whether the motorcycles belonged to the paparazzi who were chasing the royal’s vehicle, which led to her untimely death at the age of 36.
The episode also includes a play-by-play from a French photographer named Pierre, who dissects the fateful events of the day and night of August 31, 1997.
“Fatal Voyage: Diana Case Solved” is a 12-part docuseries that features interviews with a global team of detectives, forensic pathologists and royal insiders as they examine what led to Diana’s tragic death.
Download and stream “Fatal Voyage: Diana Case Solved” everywhere podcasts are available.
To read more about “Diana: Case Solved,” purchase the companion book by former detective Colin McLaren and investigative journalist Dylan Howard at bookstores or online.