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French and Riviera News Tuesday 2nd January 2018

Local

Disruptions on regions rail network - Due to regional strike action the SNCF has announced disruptions on the regions train network between Marseille and Aix-en-Provence, with 4 out of five trains running. Passengers are advised to check for any changes to the timetable on the SNCF website.

Man shot dead in Marseille - A 29 year old man has been shot dead in Marseille as he left a bar and headed for his car on New Year’s Eve. The man was reportedly known to police but they do not believe the murder was drug-related. An investigation has been opened.

Flu and gastroenteritis - Hospitals in the Alpes Maritimes region have been hit by a large number of patients being admitted with flu and gastroenteritis. On Monday more than a hundred people were treated at “La Fontonne” hospital in Antibes with patients waiting up to 16 hours to see a doctor, some patients were reportedly transferred to hospital in the Var. According to the health authorities the PACA region is the second most affected region of France with 495 cases per every 10,000 inhabitants.

Weather warning - Météo France placed the region on a yellow weather alert on Monday evening due to strong winds lasting until 6am this morning. Meanwhile an avalanche warning remains in place until 6am tomorrow morning and Corsica has been placed on an orange weather alert due to strong winds and heavy rainfall forecast today.

Motorists stopped for speeding - Motorway police have stopped a young driver for speeding on the A8 motorway. The incident happened on Sunday evening when the motorist driving from Nice to Marseille was stopped travelling at 237km/h. Police seized the vehicle and withheld the man’s driving license.

Prince Harry on the Riviera - Prince Harry has whisked his fiancee off to the French Riviera. The prince and Meghan Markle flew out of Heathrow on a New Year's Eve flight to Nice. It is understood that Harry and Miss Markle flew out to celebrate the New Year with friends and plan to stay several days at a private residence in the Riviera region.

Newborn of 2018 - The first newborn of 2018 in the region was Timeo. Timeo was born at 6am on January 1st at the Saint-Jean clinic in Cagnes sur mer.

National

Snow - A skier has been killed in an avalanche and upto 4,000 travellers heading for ski resorts in the French Alps have been left stranded due to heavy snow. 3,500 motorists spent Sunday night in emergency shelters and a further 500 holiday-makers who landed at Chambery airport also had to sleep in shelters. Meanwhile the mountain rescue service said a 22-year-old man had died when an avalanche swept him away as he skied off-piste in Val d'Isere, a resort popular with foreign visitors.


President Emmanuel Macron - President Emmanuel Macron has pledged to pursue his reform agenda with the "same intensity" in 2018 and kickstart a "French renaissance" in his first New Year's address as leader. Macron stuck with tradition in Sunday's televised address from the Elysee Palace, he cited some of his achievements in his first seven months in office, including his overhaul of the labour code. He went on to announce a "grand social project" in 2018 that would cover the health sector and housing for the homeless among other areas. He also pledged to continue to work with Germany to reform the European Union, insisting "Europe is good for France."

Business

California has become the largest state in the US to legalise recreational cannabis use. As of 1 January 2018, adults aged over 21 can possess up to an ounce (28 grams) of the drug and can grow up to six marijuana plants at home. Opponents say the law will lead to more driving under the influence of the drug and introduce young people to drug use. But business is eyeing what could be an industry worth tens of billions of dollars in the next few years.

And - Winemakers in France are planning to introduce a new hybrid grape to offset the effect global warming is having on the production of champagne. Over the past 20 years, vineyards have moved harvest dates ahead by two weeks amid fears that rising temperatures will harm the luxury bubbly, which relies on cold temperatures during production. In a bid to futureproof the industry, winemakers are researching how to create a new grape that can resist higher temperatures and mature more slowly.

Sport

Football - In the English Premier League Brighton drew against Bournemouth 2-2 Liverpool beat Burnley 2-1 Leicester beat Huddersfield 3-0 Newcastle beat stoke 1-0 and Manchester United beat Everton. In tonight’s Premier League matches - Southampton play Crystal palace Swansea play Tottenham west ham play west Brom man city play Watford 

Tennis -  British number one Johanna Konta came from a set down to get 2018 off to a winning start with victory over Madison Keys at the Brisbane International. Konta, who has not won since August, defeated the American 4-6 6-4 6-3.

Golf - Tiger Woods says he struggled to walk and needed help getting out of bed during his recovery from a back injury. The 14-time major winner underwent back surgery in April and was sidelined for almost 10 months. The American made his return earlier in December with four rounds at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas,

Weather

Mainly cloudy across the region with highs of 16 degrees in Nice and 13 degrees in Saint Tropez with a moderate north westerly wind. This evening going down to 7 degrees and cloudy.

The outlook for Wednesday and Thursday cloudy with some sunny spells and a strong westerly wind in the Var with gusts of up to 65 km/h and highs of 18 degrees.

 

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