Evening Update Thursday 31 October

The Riviera is experiencing bad weather again this evening. Meteo France have a Yellow weather warning in place for rain and flooding and storms for the Alpes Maritimes and the Var until 9.00 this evening. Driving conditions during this evening’s rush hour are difficult with lots of surface water and poor visibility in places, particularly in elevated areas. Heavy rain has particularly affected the Nice area in the past few hours. The mayor, Christian Estrosi, has said that services have been mobilized at the crisis center following the heavy rains that caused floods in the west of  Nice and which led to the interruption of the Line 2 tram and the closure of several access roads on the voie Mathis. He said that the situation is being monitored.

The prefecture of the Alpes-Maritimes has announced several measures introduced to "prevent any disturbance to public order and tranquility" during Halloween celebrations. The consumption of alcoholic beverages on public roads is forbidden from this evening at 11pm to 5am tomorrow and from November 1st at 11pm to November 2nd at 5am. Unaccompanied children under the age 13 are not allowed to circulate during these hours and the sale and use of fireworks is forbidden from today until November 2nd. Finally, those planning to dress up for Halloween have also be told to choose carefully as any use of replica firearms or artificial weapons is strictly forbidden in public

A couple who stole clothes from the market in St Tropez over the weekend have been sentenced by a court in Draguignan. They were both sentenced to 6 months in prison and one of them was banned from living in the Var for 3 years.

A 17 year old has been shot dead near the Saint-Charles railway station in Marseille. The incident happened late last night in an underground car park. The victim was taken to La Timone hospital but died shortly afterwards.

186 municipalities in France have been recognized as areas of natural disaster after last week’s storms. 20 of those municipalities are in the Var.  The list of municipalities was published today in the Official Journal, allowing affected residents to claim compensation.

The body of an elderly missing person has been found in the Alpes de Haute-Provence. The 82 year old man had been missing since Wednesday when he had left to pick mushrooms. Police from Digne-les-Bains and Sisteron were involved in the search along with tracker dogs. An investigation has been launched into the circumstances of the death.

Authorities have warned of a current scam circulating in our region concerning insulation work. The scam involves door to door salesmen claiming to be carrying out “energy checks” and offering home owners to benefit from their services by reducing heating costs and contributing to the reduction or greenhouse gas emissions. Victims of the scam are invited to contact police.

 

BUSINESS

Fiat Chrysler and PSA have confirmed that they are planning to merge to create the world's fourth largest car company. The 50/50 merger has been approved by the boards of both companies. The merger will result in cost savings and benefits amounting to 3.7 billion euros, without any factory closures, according to the companies. Carlos Tavares, who is currently chief executive of PSA will be chief executive of the merged business and John Elkann, the current chairman of Fiat, will chair the new company.

Qantas has grounded one of its Boeing 737 NG planes after discovering what it called "cracking" in one section. Qantas said that even when a crack is present, it doesn’t “immediately compromise” the safety of the aircraft. According to reports, 50 aircraft worldwide have been kept from flying while the cracks are investigated. Boeing said cracks had been found in the "pickle fork" - a section of the plane which helps attach the wing.

UK telecoms company BT has reported revenue for the half year of £11.47bn, which is down 1% and adjusted core earnings of £3.92bn, which is down 3%.

Aircraft maker Bombardier's Northern Ireland operations have been sold to the US firm Spirit AeroSystems. The Canadian firm put the factories up for sale in May as part of a reorganization of its business. Spirit is also buying a Bombardier factory is Morocco and a repair facility in the US.

Lloyds Banking Group has taken a £1.8bn charge for payment protection insurance mis-selling compensation. It takes the bank's total bill for the PPI scandal to close to £22bn. The PPI cost meant the bank made just £50m profit in the third quarter, compared to £1.8bn in the same three months a year ago.

Game company Nintendo’s second-quarter operating profit has more than doubled, beating analyst estimates, after strong demand for its Switch games console.

Airline group IAG has said the strike by pilots at British Airways in September cut its profits by €155m during the third quarter of the year. IAG said that the July to September quarter was "heavily impacted" by the industrial action, which was triggered by a dispute over pay and conditions.

Hong Kong has fallen into recession according to figures out today. The economy contracted by 3.2% in the three months to September from the previous quarter, which is the second consecutive quarter of contraction. Long-running protests, trade tensions and the slowing global economy have all affected Hong Kong’s economy.

Twitter is to ban all political advertising worldwide, saying that the reach of such messages "should be earned, not bought". In contrast, Facebook recently ruled out a ban on political ads.

 

SPORT

Tennis… World number one Ashleigh Barty is through to the semi-finals of the WTA Finals in China after beating Petra Kvitova in straight sets. The final score was 6-4 6-2.

Football…Holders Manchester City have been drawn away at Oxford United in the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup, which used to be known as the League Cup. Colchester United, the lowest-ranked side left in the competition, face a trip to five-time winners Manchester United. Aston Villa will host eight-time winners Liverpool, while Everton will be at home to Leicester City. The ties are scheduled to take place in the week commencing 16 December.

 

MA NOLAN’S RUGBY WORLD CUP REPORT

The England coach Eddie Jones has named his side for the World Cup Final against South Africa on Saturday.

Captain Owen Farrell has been passed fit as have winger Jonny May and prop Kyle Sinckler.

Ben Youngs will start at scrum half again with Ben Spencer on the bench after flying out to replace Willi Heinz.

George Ford will start again at fly half with Farrell at inside centre.

The pack is the same as that which worked to such great effect in the semi final victory against New Zealand and Jones says that England will go out and play “with no fear”.

He added that South Africa  will be difficult opponents and that England would have to fight really hard to win.

For the Springboks, electric winger Cheslin Kolbe will be back after missing the semi final against Wales with an ankle injury

He’s the only change made by Rassie Erasmus to the side that beat Wales.

Sbu Nkosi drops to the bench which the coach says is tough but he’ll probably get a run out at some point.

Erasmus said that South Africa had been building momentum throughout the tournament which he said had come from consistency.

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