Evening News Update Thursday 25 October

Fifty beaches in the Var are now affected by oil pollution from the ship collision off Corsica, according to local media reports. The number has increased from thirty seven a few days ago. One hundred and fifty employees of a specialist company, as well as many government staff, continue to track and clean up the areas of oil on the shore. Authorities have reminded residents and visitors not to attempt to pick up any areas of oil they may find.


The region’s unemployment figures have been released for the third quarter of the year. In total, there are 104,230 job seekers who are enrolled with the unemployment service in the Alpes Maritimes and 96,790 in the Var.

An audit by local authorities has concluded that many speed bumps on roads in the Var are non-compliant with recommended specifications. The Departmental Council of Var conducted an audit after complaints by motoring organisations.  The survey found that 428 speed bumps out of 668, that’s 64 per cent, are non-compliant. The Departmental Council is now looking to carry out works to standardise the speed bumps.

A new sky scraper has been officially inaugurated today in Marseille. La Marseillaise tower stands 135 metres high on the waterfront at the harbour.  Construction began on the building three and a half years ago and 96 per cent of the waste from construction has been recycled. The building uses marine geothermal energy for heating and cooling.

The Tour de France will be returning to our region in 2019 after bypassing us this year. The Tour will arrive in the Hautes-Alpes on Tuesday 24th July next year for the 16th stage, starting from the Pont du Gard and finishing the day in Gap. The next day the 17th stage will depart from Embrun.  The Tour de France is celebrating its 100th anniversary next year. 

Electric scooters will no longer be allowed to drive on pavements in France, and will now have to travel on the roads and follow the Highway Code just like cars and motor bikes in response to concerns about pedestrian safety. The presence of scooters on pavements has prompted widespread concern, particularly for vulnerable and elderly members of society.



The European Central Bank has left interest rates unchanged at its meeting today. The ECB’s Governing Council said that it expects the key ECB interest rates to remain at their present levels at least through the summer of 2019.

Twitter has announced better than expected revenue and profit numbers for the third quarter. Higher advertising sales helped offset a fall in monthly users. Revenue was 29% higher, helped by coverage of major entertainment and sporting events.

Shares in WPP, the world's biggest adverting firm, have fallen heavily after the company warned that growth in the business is slowing. WPP, whose founder and CEO Sir Martin Sorrell stepped down earlier this year, reported lower than expected third quarter sales and reduced its full-year outlook. New chief executive Mark Read called for "radical thinking" to turn the company around.

Cathay Pacific says the personal data of up to 9.4 million passengers has been accessed in the latest security breach to hit the aviation industry. The data apparently included passport numbers, email addresses and expired credit card details. Chief executive Rupert Hogg apologised and said there was "no evidence" the information had been misused.


Tennis… Karolina Pliskova has defeated fellow Czech player Petra Kvitova in straight sets to secure her place in the semi-finals of the WTA Finals in Singapore. The world number eight won 6-3   6-4. 

Football… Former Arsenal, Manchester United and Netherlands forward Robin van Persie has announced his retirement from football at the end of the season. The 35-year-old won the FA Cup with Arsenal and a Premier League title at Manchester United.

There’s more Europa League action tonight including Chelsea against BATE Borisov in Group L,Leipzig against Celtic in Group B ,Sporting Lisbon against Arsenal in Group E and Rangers against Spartak Moscow in Group G.

Golf… Matthew Fitzpatrick is three shots off leader Patrick Reed after the first round of the WGC-HSBC Champions tournament in China. Fitzpatrick finished on five under.  Tommy Fleetwood was on six under.

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