French and Riviera News Friday 16th February 2018


Fire - 38 children with reduced mobility and eight supervisors have been evacuated from a centre in Hyères in the Var after a fire broke out on Thursday evening. Twenty firefighters from Hyères, La Londe, La Garde and Pierrefeu intervened and children and staff were immediately placed in a secure area. No injuries were reported and an investigation has been opened to determine the cause of the blaze.

Court - The public prosecutor has requested a five year sentence, and a ban from ever operating a business, against Jacques Cassandri, the suspected “mastermind” behind the bank robbery in Nice, where €29m was stolen from the Societé General in the late seventies. The prosecutor described Cassandri as a thug with a violent past, and is known to friends as the French Al Capone. The trial continues today with pleadings of the defence.

Private Jets - According to a report published this week Nice is the second destination in Europe, ahead of Le Bourget in Paris, for private jets. In 2017, nearly 35,000 private flights were recorded at Nice Airport representing an increase of 6.6% compared to 2016. The airport of Cannes-Mandelieu ranked 13th.

Cars - The State Property Authority in Monaco is selling cars that have either been abandoned or which are no longer required as part of the Principality’s fleet. However buyers hoping to get their hands on a forgotten Ferrari or lost Lamborghini will be disappointed as most of the 83 vehicles on offer were registered before 2005 in France. A full list of the vehicles is available in the State Property Authority office in Monaco - the deadline for submitting offers is by noon on Friday 16th March.

Football - Despite Mario Balotelli opening the scoring against Lokomotiv Moscow in Thursday’s match. OGC Nice went on to lose 3-2 in the first leg of the Europa League. Meanwhile Bordeaux has asked its supporters not to attend Sunday night’s match against Marseille following a ban for disciplinary and security reasons.


Three French skiers killed - Three French skiers have been found dead in the Pyrenees.  The bodies of the three men from western France, aged between 29 and 38, were retrieved by rescue services on Thursday morning, after being buried by an avalanche in an off-piste area.

French Budget Minister - French Budget Minister Gerald Darmanin has denied that he used his political position to ask for sexual favours, following a second complaint from a woman this week. Prosecutors in Paris opened an investigation on Tuesday after a woman filed a complaint alleging that he had abused his powers while mayor of the northern town of Tourcoing in 2015 and 2016.

50 euros for good drivers - Police officers in the Dordogne are offering 50 euro vouchers for good driving. With the school’s breaking up for half term in the region, police in unmarked cars will be petrolling the roads to see if drivers stop at pedestrian crossings, make proper use of indicators when turning, stay well within the speed limit, and generally drive in a manner that shows he or she is taking other drivers and pedestrians into consideration.


Bitcoin rose above 10,000 dollars on Thursday as reports of the demise of the cryptocurrency appeared to be wide of the mark.
Bitcoin has fallen by 70 percent from its peak of above 19,000 dollars since mid December but it’s been rising steadily again over the past two weeks.
Negative headlines,increased security by global regulators and a rise in the incidence of hacks on exchanges have all played a part in Bitcoin’s fall over recent weeks but the cryptocurrency has risen this week in tune with equity markets and some strategists are saying it could reach 12,000 dollars in the next few days.

Airbus has written off another 1.3 billion euros on its troubled A400 military transport plane bringing total losses on the project to more than 8 billion euros.
The plane has had a number of setbacks over the past few years,most notably a crash during a test flight in Spain in 2015 which cost the lives of 4 crew members.
The aerospace group reported increased profits of 4.3 billion euros for 2017 against 3.6 billion in 2016.Revenues were stable at 66.8 billion euros.
Last week,Airbus reached a provisional agreement with 7 European NATO buyers of the A400 over further delays to delivery of the plane.

And-Renault has asked chief executive Carlos Ghosn to stay on for another 4 years ending speculation about his future.
There had been reports that the chief executive was going to stand down from the position that he’s held since 2005 but he’ll stay on pending shareholder approval in June.
If approved,he’ll also stay on as head of the Japanese-French alliance between Renault,Nissan and Mitsubishi.



Winter Olympics-Germany still leads the medals table on day 7 of the Games in Pyeongchang.
Germany has  9 gold medals in total haul of 15 with Norway in second place with 6 gold medals and the Netherlands and the USA in equal 3rd with 5 gold medals each.
Earlier this morning Matthias Mayer of Austria produced a brilliant run to win the men’s Super G and claim his second Winter Olympics skiing gold medal while Michela Moioli of Italy won gold in the women’s snowboard cross.

Today there’s action in curling,figure skating,freestyle skiing,ski jumping and the skeleton where Great Britain’s Dom Parsons has just won Great Britain’s first medal of the games,taking the bronze.

Football-Arsenal beat Ostersunds of Sweden 3-0 away in the Europa League round of 32 last night while Celtic beat Zenit St Petersburg 1-0.Nice lost 3-2 at home to Lokomotiv Moscow.

It’s FA Cup 5th round weekend in England with one tie tonight as Chelsea play Hull at Stamford Bridge.
Highlights over the weekend include Rochdale who are currently bottom of League 1 against Premier League giants Spurs.

Boxing-Chris Eubank Jr takes on George Groves at the Manchester Arena tomorrow night for the Super middleweight world title in a bout  that many say should be a classic.
The winner will not only hold world champion status but will also reach the final of the World Boxing Super Series to meet either Callum Smith of Great Britain or Jurgen Brahmer of Germany who fight next week.

Formula 1-Williams say that they have no concerns that their inexperienced driver line-up will affect their performance this season.
Lance Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin have the least experience of any pair on the grid but Claire Williams says that if the team didn’t think they couldn’t perform then they wouldn’t have put them in the cars.
Williams unveiled its 2018 car at a media event in London last night.Claire Williams said that she was “excited” about the new season.

Rugby Union-France will not be punished after an investigation found that they did not use the head injury assessment HIA rules to gain an advantage in their Six Nations defeat against Ireland.
Fly half Matthieu Jalibert and scrum-half Antoine Dupont were both forced off with knee injuries and sent for HIA’s.
Dupont’s departure allowed for Maxime Machenaud to return to the field which would not have been permitted without an HIA.
A review panel ruled that the HIA decisions were made by the matchday doctor.


Quite cloudy with some bright spells and light variable winds.

Top temperature 14 degrees.

Overnight lows of 10 degrees with rain spreading across the region.

The weekend-Wet tomorrow,showers on Sunday with some bright spells later in the day.Highs of 11-13 degrees.


A recent study warns that cleaning the house with harmful chemicals is worse than smoking 20 a day.

Experts say they cause damage to airways, speeding up the decline of our lungs as we age.

Proffesional cleaners and women suffer most while according to the study men seem unaffected. The researchers say it is likely the chemicals irritate the lining of the airways, leading to long-term changes in the way they work.

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