French and Riviera News Friday 22nd July 2022

News

6,000 of the 37,000 people evacuated during forest fires in southwestern France able to return home - While the fires in Gironde southwestern France appear to have stabilised, as confirmed by the prefecture on Thursday afternoon, 6,000 of the nearly 37,000 people evacuated have been able to return to their homes and 200 firefighters who came from across France have returned to their departments. 7,000 hectares of forest have been destroyed by the flames. The Prefect has however said that several hotspots remain and that firefighters remain mobilized and continue to secure certain sensitive areas.

Heatwave warning remains in place for 13 departments in France including the Var and the Alpes Maritimes - Meanwhile the heatwave is not yet over as 13 departments in the Southeast of France are still on an orange heatwave alert issued by Météo France. The warning remains in place for the Var the Alpes de Haute Provence, the Bouches du Rhone and the Alpes Maritimes.

Baby dies after being left behind in dad's car - A 14-month-old baby has died in the Safran company car park in Bordes in Béarn in southwestern France. His father is believed to have forgotten to drop him off at the day-care centre and had gone to work. An investigation has been opened to try to clarify the exact circumstances of this tragedy. According to initial information, it was the crèche which had raised the alarm after noting the absence of the baby.

Truck driver has lucky escape on A8 motorway after brakes fail - A truck driver has had a lucky escape after his brakes failed on the A8 motorway. The incident occurred on Thursday evening shortly after 6.30pm at La Trinité, heading westbound towards Aix en Provence. According to police the driver had to resort to an emergency manoeuvre to stop his heavy goods vehicle which saw the vehicle skim against the central wall for 1km before stopping.

First case of monkey pox has been detected in Monaco - A first case of monkey pox has been detected in the Principality of Monaco. According to the Princess Grace hospital the virus was detected in one person and there are also three other suspected cases that have not yet been confirmed. The Monegasque government has requested doses of the vaccine. As a reminder, this viral disease, which in general is not dangerous, starts with a rash, a few days after the onset of fever, which gives lesions on the skin which then turn into scabs, similar to chickenpox.

New version of health bill - The upper house of the French parliament has voted in favour of a new version of the health bill introduced during covid, which reinstates the possibility of imposing a health pass at borders and allows France’s High Authority for health to judge whether the vaccination obligation for employees is necessary or not.

Brigitte Bardot calls for hunting season to be postponed - French actress and animal rights activists Brigitte Bardot has called for the 2023 hunting season to be postponed. In an open letter to the new Minister of Ecology, Christophe Béchu, Bardot claims that due to the multiple fires and drought hitting France this summer measures must be taken to protect the animals. Last summer, after the terrible fire that ravaged the Massif des Maures in the Var, Bardot had already asked for a year without hunting in the region.

La Poste to discontinue the famous red stamp - La Poste is set to discontinue the famous red stamp and replace it with an "e-letter". The organization said today that it is modernizing its mail range to meet new customer uses and improve its carbon footprint. As of January 1, 2023, customers will be able to choose between 3 types of letter: the red e-Letter for their urgent shipments delivered the next day, the Green Letter for their daily shipments delivered in three days and the "Turquoise Services Plus" letter for their shipments of their most important documents requiring follow-up notifications.

Business

The European Central Bank (ECB) has raised interest rates for the first time in more than 11 years as it tries to control soaring eurozone inflation. The ECB increased its key interest rate by 0.5 percentage points to 0.0% and plans further hikes this year.

Meanwhile France’s Minister of Finance Bruno Le Maire has announced that France intends to limit the increase in public spending. During the unveiling of the ministry’s economic forecast on Thursday evening the government announced a slowdown in activity in 2023, with a growth of 1.4%. Le Maire went on to announced that the government intends to bring France's deficit below 3% by 2027, as announced by Emmanuel Macron during his campaign.

Shares in the owner of social media platform Snapchat have plummeted after it missed revenue expectations and warned it faces "incredibly challenging" conditions. The firm says advertisers cut spending as they face supply chain disruptions. Snap shares slumped by more than 25% in after-hours trade in New York.

The boss of Ryanair Michael O'Leary has urged the UK government to take a more "practical, common sense" approach to post-Brexit policy, to allow more workers from Europe to fill vacancies. Mr O'Leary said he could hire people from continental Europe for jobs that he cannot fill with British workers but is unable to get visas for them.

Sport

Tour de France - Denmark's Jonas Vingegaard is one step closer to winning the 2022 Tour de France after he extended his overall lead with a stunning stage 18 victory. He leads overall by three mins 26 secs.

Athletics - Dina Asher-Smith has won the 200m world bronze to return to the major championship podium after a year of personal and physical pain. Asher-Smith's 2021 Olympics campaign was wrecked by a hamstring injury.

Football – Former Germany striker Uwe Seeler, one of the greatest players in his country's footballing history, has died aged 85. Seeler scored 43 goals in 72 games for the then-West Germany and featured at four World Cups. He spent his entire club career at Hamburg, from 1954 to 1972, scoring 490 goals in 580 appearances.

Senegal's Sadio Mane has been crowned African Footballer of the Year for the second time running at the Confederation of African Football (Caf) awards ceremony. The awards returned for the first time in three years after being suspended by the coronavirus pandemic.

Formula One - The grandstands of France’s Grand Prix at the Paul-Ricard circuit will open from today Friday August 22. The 70th edition of the French Grand Prix taking place this weekend is expecting to welcome some 200,000 spectators over the next three days.

Weather

Fine and sunny with highs of 31-33 degrees in Nice, Cannes, Saint Tropez and Toulon. A gentle breeze. The Var and the Alpes Maritimes remains on an orange heatwave alert today.

This evening going down to 24 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes and 21 degrees in the Var with clear skies.

The outlook for the weekend remaining fine and sunny with highs of 33 degrees.

Sea temperature 22 degrees            UV level 9

Sunrise 06.08hr                                     Sunset: 21.04hr

And Finally

In the UK beavers are to be given legal protection, making it an offence to kill, harm or disturb them. Under new laws expected to come into force on October 1st will see the animals formally recognised as a native species, 400 years after they were hunted to extinction for their fur and meat. They have since reappeared due to illegal releases and official reintroduction in enclosures, and up to 800 are now thought to be living wild on our rivers.

 

 

 

 

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