French and Riviera News Monday 9th August 2021


Health pass required from today for bars, cafes and restaurants - From today Monday 9th August, the health pass will be required for cafes, restaurants, bars, long distance journeys, cinemas, nursing homes and hospitals, with an exception for A&E and your general practitioner. For employees working in places which require a health pass they have until the end of the month to get vaccinated against covid and teenagers aged 12-17 have until September 30th.

After the decision rendered by the Constitutional Council, on August 5th, the health law was put into effect validating the second stage and its extension from places of leisure and culture to among other things cafes, restaurants and long-distance journeys by plane, train and coach.

The government distinguishes between two different certificates. The "activities" health pass, which allows access to places open to the public, which is applicable until November 15th, unless an extension is voted by Parliament. And the “travel” health pass, applicable until June 30th, 2022, according to the government website.

If you are vaccinated. There are two possibilities: either you have been given your vaccination certificate at your vaccination center, in which case you can scan the QR code in the Tous AntiCovid application. Or you must go to the Medicare website to download your vaccination certificate, which you can then print or add to the Tous AntiCovid application. Note that any health professional can find your vaccination certificate and print it upon request.

If you are not vaccinated. You will need to perform a PCR or antigen test. The negative result will be valid 72 hours (this has been increased from the original 48 hours). The negative test certificate is given to you by the laboratory that carried it out, in paper format, by SMS or electronically. You can then integrate it with TousAntiCovid.

And if you have had Covid, know that the result of a positive test dated within at least the last eleven days is valid for six months.

It you’re on holiday and staying in a hotel, you will need to show your pass to access the collective areas (restaurant, bar, swimming pool, spa, gym, etc.).

In places of worship it becomes necessary when cultural activities take place there such as (concerts, conferences, etc.).

The presentation of the sanitary pass will not however be compulsory in take-out points of sale, in bakeries, grocery stores, mini markets, tobacco bars, pastry shops, tea rooms except if you consume on the spot.

For shopping centers, the sanitary pass will not be automatic. It will only be required by decision of the prefect of the department. To date for shopping centres in the Alpes Maritimes and the Var will not require the health pass (as announced by the prefect on Friday). However, access to bars and restaurants located in shopping centers will be subject to the health pass.

The health pass will be required for long-distance journeys by plane, train or bus. On the rail network, travellers must show their health pass if they take an Inoui or Ouigo TGV, an Intercités train, an international long-distance train from France, including night trains. Pass verification can take place at any time. However, it will not be compulsory for TER and other daily transport users such as subways, buses, RER and Transilien.

Air France has set up a service for checking travel documents, including the health pass, before departure, called "Ready to fly". This device must avoid successive checks before boarding.

Harder sanctions for fraudsters – Meanwhile, in an interview published in the Parisian on Sunday August 8th, France’s Minister of Health, Olivier Véran announced that the introduction of the health pass would be “accompanied by harder sanctions for possible fraudsters”. Individuals claiming someone else's pass, or selling false certificates, will be exposed to a series of fines and even a prison sentence.

Demonstrations - This weekend saw more than 230,000 people march for a fourth consecutive weekend in protest against the health pass and mandatory vaccination. Protests took place in 198 towns and cities. Official Interior Ministry figures show that there were 237,000 people marching nationwide, including 17,000 in Paris.

Health defense council to be held on Wednesday - A health defense council will be held this Wednesday August 11th by videoconference. The Head of State has called the meeting as the spread of the Delta variant continues to gain ground in France.

Latest figures show that in critical care services, the number of patients admitted is on the rise. Saturday August 7th saw 1,510 patients admitted, compared to 1,099 a week ago. The incidence rate, nationwide, now stands at 230, far above the alert threshold, which is 50.

Hospitalizations are also on the rise with 8,425 hospitalized patients on Saturday, compared 8,368 the day before. Faced with the threat of the Delta variant, Corsica, the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region and Occitania, have launched the white plan for hospitals.

At the same time, the vaccination campaign continues to progress in France. This Saturday, 44,655,607 people had received at least one injection (or 66.2% of the total population) and 37,153,307 people now had a complete vaccination schedule (or 55.1% of the total population).

Covid cases on cruise ship - Several cases of Covid have been detected on a cruise ship in Marseille. The passengers concerned have been placed in isolation, they were part of a group of 180 tourists who carried out a weeklong cruise in the Mediterranean with stops in Spain and Italy.

In other news

A man found dead in front of train station - Police have opened an investigation after a man was found dead in front of the Arcs-Draguignan train station. Passengers alerted staff shortly after 6.30am on Sunday morning. The victim was reportedly shot dead. An investigation for "intentional homicide" was opened by the prosecutor's office in Draguignan.

Fire - Firefighters have managed to control a fire which broke out in the hills behind Nice in Guillaumes on Sunday evening. 25 firefighters along with helicopters were on site.

Residents hear explosion in Saint Laurent du var - Meanwhile residents in Saint-Laurent-du-Var were taken by surprise after a large explosion was heard on Sunday evening. The blast was caused after a fire broke out in the basement of a building located at 356 boulevard Albert Camus in the Saint-Joseph district. Firefighters were quick to extinguish the blaze. Nobody was evacuated and no injuries were reported.

French motorist hands himself into authorities - A French motorist has handed himself into authorities in Catalonia, Spain, for throwing a cigarette butt from the window of his vehicle. Last week the Spanish authorities had said they were looking for the driver after a video of him throwing the cigarette butt out of his car went viral on social media.

Electric fishing boats - Electric fishing boats are attracting more and more individuals. The small fishing boats, emblematic of the ports on the Riviera, are being modernized and individuals can now opt for an electric motor, for a greener alternative.  To date, six boats are electric with seven more expected to join the ranks at the port of Nice.

Pebble Castles Championship - The 30th edition of the pebble castles world championship takes place today in Ville