The Alpes Maritimes Prefecture has said that security forces will be deployed "on a massive scale" throughout the department this Easter weekend to ensure compliance with the rules in force. It said that irresponsible behavior will be strongly sanctioned. The Prefecture said that the health indicators of the Alpes-Maritimes department are still worrying. In particular, the incidence rate is increasing and stands at 473 per 100,000 inhabitants. The occupancy rate of intensive care beds is 87%.
Under measures applying to the whole of France announced by President Macron on Wednesday evening, from tomorrow Saturday 3rd April all French departments will be subject to the same rules and restrictions, almost identical to those that applied until now in 19 departments. The 7pm curfew will be maintained in the whole of France. No outing is permitted during the curfew except for one of the the reasons mentioned on certificates. Between 6am and 7pm, everyone is allowed to circulate freely in public provided they do not go more than 10 km from their place of residence as the crow flies. Unlike the previous lockdowns, these outdoor trips are authorized "without any time limit". An identity document or any other proof of address will be requested. If you wish to venture beyond a radius of 10 km during the day, you must be in possession of a completed exceptional travel certificate. The consumption of alcohol is forbidden on public roads.
Inter-regional travel is being tolerated over the Easter weekend until Monday evening for those wishing to isolate somewhere else. SNCF have said that for the Easter weekend, all TGV INOUI, OUIGO, Intercités, regional and international trains scheduled, will run normally until April 5 inclusive. You can get more details on sncf.com
The required certificates and full details of restrictions which apply throughout France and in specific deparments can be found on the French government's website https://www.gouvernement.fr/info-coronavirus
The Cannes town hall has announced the opening of vaccination on Saturday April 3 and Tuesday April 6 to law enforcement personnel and teachers residing in or exercising their professional activity in Cannes. Members of the police force and volunteer teachers can register via the municipal website www.cannes.com Vaccination slots for all people aged 50 and over without comorbidities have been open in Cannes since March 25.
Meanwhile, Xavier Bertrand, president of the Hauts-de-France region, wants France to vaccinate "all professions that are on the front line". Speaking to French media this morning he said that he wants vaccination to be offered "as a priority" to people who cannot work remotely.
Monaco has announced the extension of current health measures until April 18 inclusive. However, a change to the curfew hours will take place from tomorrow, 3 April. The curfew will be in place in the Principality from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. Restaurant take-out is authorized until 8 p.m. from April 3 and delivery service is authorized until 9 p.m. Restaurants are still only open for lunch and are closed for dinner. Access to restaurants for lunch is limited to people who can show a residence, work or school in Monaco. More than 11,500 people have now been vaccinated, or more than 30% of the Principality's population. People over 55 years of age who have expressed a wish to be vaccinated are currently able to receive a vaccination.
The Monaco government still recommends residents not to visit the Alpes Maritimes except for compelling reasons. If you do go to the Alpes-Maritimes or the Var, for a period of more than 24 hours, the production of a negative PCR test carried out 72 hours before departure applies but you don't need a test if you are going to those two departments for less than 24 hours. For all trips to other areas of France outside the Alpes-Maritimes and Var departments, the production of a negative PCR test carried out 72 hours before departure is required. Business trips to France are authorized, without the need to produce a negative PCR test, provided that there is a reason for urgency or frequency. All schools in Monaco will remain open next week and will provide face-to-face lessons throughout the week. The Monaco Government still requires all residents returning from a stay outside the Principality to make an appointment via the call center in order to carry out a PCR test on their return to the Principality, except for stays of less than 24 hours in the Alpes Maritimes or Var.
In other news, Buses and tram services are disrupted in our region today due to nationwide strike action. There are no trams operating in Nice and many bus routes of the Lignes d’Azur network are disrupted. You can get more details on lignesdazur.com
The wrecks of several vessels have arrived in Toulon after being recovered from the sea off Corsica. A detachment of the Mediterranean Clearance Divers Group has been working for the past two weeks to clear wreckage and old ammunition from the seabed to improve safety for mariners and other users of the sea and coast. Divers identified five wrecks in the bays of Sant'Amanza and Figari. These wrecks were then craned aboard a ship which transported them to Toulon for dismantling. Mine clearance operations also took place including a controlled explosion.
Many public buildings in Nice are being lit in blue light to mark World Autism Awareness Day. Thousands of landmarks and buildings around the world are lit in blue on April 2 each year in recognition of people with autism and those who support them.
The days of banner towing planes may be numbered. The French senate has voted to ban the planes, a familiar sight off the Riviera's beaches in more normal times, as part of climate law changes. The ban is expected to come into force from 2022.
Employers in the United States added more than 900,000 jobs in March, driven by re-openings of restaurants, bars, arts organisations and schools. The gains were the biggest since August and helped lower the unemployment rate to 6% in March from 6.2% in February.
Several countries have been added to England's coronavirus "red list". As from 9 April, international visitors who have travelled from or through the Philippines, Pakistan, Kenya and Bangladesh in the previous 10 days will be refused entry. An exception is made for British or Irish passport holders, or people with UK residence rights, but they must first pay to quarantine in a government-approved hotel for 10 days.
Stock markets in the United States are closed today because of the Good Friday holiday but Asian markets rose earlier today following a record-breaking session on Wall Street yesterday with the S&P 500 breaking the 4000 point barrier for the first time. Several European stock markets, including those in London and Frankfurt are also closed today.
Cricket... Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar has been admitted to hospital after testing positive for Covid-19. He tweeted that he'd decided to go to a hospital in Mumbai "as a matter of abundant precaution under medical advice" and said he was hoping to be back home in a few days.
Rugby Union..Leinster's Heineken Champions Cup match against Toulon this evening has been called off after an unnamed member of the Toulon squad tested positive for Covid-19.
In other matches this weekend, Gloucester host La Rochelle this evening, tomorrow Wasps play Clermont Auvergne, Munster play Toulouse and Exeter host Lyon. On Sunday Racing 92 play Edinburgh, Bordeaux host Bordeaux Begles and Scarlets play Sale.
Football...The English Premier League is back in action this weekend following the international break. On Saturday Chelsea play West Brom. Leeds play Sheffield United. Leicester meet Manchester City and Arsenal play Liverpool. On Sunday Southampton play Burnley. Newcastle face Spurs. Aston Villa play Fulham and Manchester United play Brighton. Everton play Crystal Palace and Wolves face West Ham on Monday.