French and Riviera News Friday 1st December 2023

News

Weather warning - Meteo France has issued a yellow alert for heavy rain and flooding in the Alpes-Maritimes. The warning is in place until midnight tonight. There's also a yellow warning for high waves and flooding in both the Alpes-Maritimes and the Var from 5am to 3pm today Friday 1st December.

Strike action – In other news, national strike action is planned today on French railways. The SNCF has said that services will be affected until 8am on Saturday morning.

New app - Meanwhile, a new alert on the SNCF’s mobile application will now allow passengers to be notified when a seat becomes available on a full train. The new feature of the SNCF Connect application aims to make it easier to find a place during busy times of year, such as the school holidays. Once sent, the user has a window of between 10 minutes and 2 hours, depending on how soon the scheduled departure is, to purchase a ticket. Once this time has run out the alert is sent to the next person in the queue.

Road safety campaign – France’s road safety body has launched its prevention campaign against drugged driving. It said that drugs increase reaction time, decrease rapid decision-making and change people's perceptions of space. On French roads, 1 in 5 deaths involve a driver who has taken drugs.

World AIDS Day - As part of World AIDS Day today, December 1st the mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi, along with regional elected officials and the president of the association “Zero AIDS Objective for Nice and the Alpes Maritimes” will hold a commemoration as a tribute to all AIDS victims at 2pm this afternoon on the cours Jaques Chirac in Nice. World AIDS Day, designated on 1 December every year since 1988, is an international day dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of HIV infection and mourning those who've died of the disease.

Abandoned Botticelli - An abandoned Botticelli painting has been discovered in the cellar of a private individual, in southern Italy. The work attributed to one of the masters of the Italian Renaissance is estimated at 100 million euros. It was exhibited for a long time in a chapel of Santa Maria la Carità, near Naples, before falling, in the 20th century, into the hands of a family from the region. However, it remains a mystery as to how and why it ended up in their possession.

Euromillions - Finally, Feeling lucky? Today Friday 1st December, there is a 173 million euros jackpot up for grabs on the Euromillion lottery. It’s one of the five largest amounts ever offered by the lottery since its creation in 2004.

Business

A network of thousands of fake and misleading accounts based in China have been recently removed according to Meta. The company claims that the users posed as Americans and sought to spread polarising content about US politics and US-China relations. Among the topics the network posted about were abortion, culture war issues and aid to Ukraine. Meta did not link the profiles to Beijing officials, but it has seen an increase in such networks based in China ahead of the 2024 US elections. Meta said that China is now the third-biggest geographical source of such networks, behind Russia and Iran.

The president of Microsoft Brad Smith has told reporters that the recent chaos at OpenAI was not due to a disagreement over safety. According to some reports at the time, there were fears that the sacking of OpenAI boss Sam Altman followed a "dangerous" discovery at the ChatGPT creator. Smith claims this was not at all the case. No reason has been given for the sacking apart from the board's statement, in which they said they believed he had not been "consistently candid in communications" with them, and as a result they had "lost confidence" in his leadership. Mr Altman was reinstated at the firm last week.

And – Tesla's long-delayed Cybertruck will be priced starting at $60,990, which is over 50% more than what CEO Elon Musk had said in 2019. Musk has said that the truck, made of shiny stainless steel and shaped into flat planes, is partly inspired by a car-turned-submarine in the 1977 James Bond movie "The Spy Who Loved Me”. However, according to experts its new body material and unconventional, futuristic styling has added complexity and costs to production, and threatens to alienate traditional pickup truck buyers who focus on utility.

Sport

Football - Liverpool have reached the last 16 of the Europa League as group winners with victory over LASK at Anfield. The Reds go through to the knockouts and avoid February's play-off round.

Meanwhile, today Everton are expected to submit their appeal against the deduction of 10 Premier League points, handed down by an independent commission. The club were sanctioned on November 17 for a breach of the Premier League's profit and sustainability rules and have 14 days to lodge an appeal.

Golf - Tiger Woods shot a three-over-par 75 on his return to competitive golf at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas. The 15-time major champion, 47, has not played since having ankle surgery after injury forced him to withdraw from the third round of the Masters in April.

Weather

Cloudy with thundery showers forecast. A moderate breeze and highs of 17 in Monaco, Nice, Cannes, Antibes and Saint-Tropez. This evening going down to 10 degrees along the coast and 7 degrees inland.

The outlook for tomorrow Saturday, clear skies, strong winds are forecast for the Var region with a drop in temperatures. Highs of 11 degrees in Saint-Tropez. 14 degrees in Nice. Sunday fine and sunny with a fresh breeze and highs of 13 degrees

Sunrise       07.43am

Sunset        04.54pm

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