Evening Update Wednesday 6th July 2022

A private memorial service will take place on Thursday, a week after a five-year-old Ukrainian boy was killed by an electric scooter on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice. The Ukrainian community of Nice will gather, with the boy's family, in a city centre church. The child had taken refuge in Nice with his mother after fleeing the war in Ukraine. His father has now been able to leave Ukraine to be with family here on the Riviera. The boy was on a marked pedestrian crossing when the scooter knocked him over. It was travelling at more than 50 kilometres per hour. The scooter rider has been charged with manslaughter.

Wearing a mask will become compulsory again from Monday on Lignes d'Azur public transport services throughout the Nice metropolitan area. Mayor Christian Estrosi said a joint decree had been signed with the mayors of other communes that make up the Nice region. It comes after the coronavirus incidence rate in the area grew by 50% in just a week - from 800 to more than 1,300 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants. The mask requirement applies to buses and trams on the entire Lignes d’Azur network - but not SNCF train services. However, the SNCF says wearing a mask on trains is "strongly recommended", even though it is not yet compulsory again.

Meanwhile the city of Cannes has opened up more vaccination slots for over 60s and people with underlying health conditions to get their second booster jab. The municipal vaccination centre will now be open for longer. It's only accessible by appointment, by calling the main town hall switchboard. It's also possible to get the second booster dose from a pharmacy, GP or nurse. Cannes has also temporarily relaxed the rules on occupying public space, so that pharmacies can put up marquees outside their premises to serve as vaccination centres.

A humanitarian association based in Marseille is urgently seeking a Mediterranean port to disembark more than 300 migrants who have been rescued off the coast of Libya in recent weeks. SOS Méditerranée says the 306 migrants have been saved from inflatable boats drifting in the central Mediterranean in eight separate rescue missions. Some of the migrants have been on board the charity's ambulance ship, the Ocean Viking, for 11 days in unbearable heat.

Tourism professionals on the Riviera are feeling confident about the summer season, with initial figures suggesting a near-return to pre-pandemic levels, despite rising inflation and the war in Ukraine. Hotel occupancy rates are averaging 80%, after two years of disappointing results due to the coronavirus pandemic. American tourists in particular are back on the Riviera at last. And some luxury hotels are also benefiting from the fact that many weddings had to be postponed over the past two years - and they're playin