French and Riviera News Monday October 12th 2020



Storm Alex - Following storm Alex which hit the Alpes Maritimes on October 2nd some schools in the region are to reopen their doors today.

To date, seven bodies have been found during the major rescue operation which continues in the valleys behind Nice and Menton and the whereabouts of twelve others remains unknown.

Storm Alex led to severe flooding and according to an INSEE study, 30% of inhabitants in the Alpes-Maritimes and Vaucluse region live in a flood zone with one million inhabitants across the entire PACA region being affected and Nice being one of the most exposed areas.

Marseille and Aix remain on high alert for Covid-19 - The Prefect of the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur region has announced that Marseille and Aix-en-Provence are to remain on high alert due to Covid-19 for at least another fifteen days.

The maximum alert which was put in place on September 23rd has been extended from today until October 27 with bars remaining closed along with sporting venues and a ban on gatherings of more than ten people.

Montpellier and Toulouse become maximum alert zones – Meanwhile due to a sharp increase in cases of Covid-19 Toulouse and Montpellier have also been declared as “maximum alert zones” from midnight tonight.

The move will see new restrictions including, the closure of bars, casinos and sporting venues and a limitation on large gatherings.

Latest figures for Covid-19 in France have shown that while nearly 27,000 French people have tested positive for coronavirus infection in the past 24 hours, there has been a slight drop in the number being admitted to intensive care.

Monaco - Meanwhile one new case on Covid-19 was declared in Monaco on Sunday bringing the total number of residents affected to 234.

Three patients are currently hospitalised and 21 people are being cared for by the Home Monitoring Centre.

Study - According to a study by Australia’s national science agency the coronavirus that causes Covid-19 can survive on items such as banknotes and phones for up to 28 days in cool, dark conditions.

Antoine-Lacassagne centre - The American magazine Newsweek has classified the Lacassagne Centre in Nice as one of the best hospitals in the world.

The ranking for 2020 has seen the Antoine-Lacassagne centre be placed among the top one hundred in the world and amongst the top ten in France.


Five killed in mid-air crash - Five people have been killed after two small planes collided in mid-air before crashing in western central France.

The collision between two light aircraft happened south-east of the city of Tours at about 4pm on Saturday.

Emergency crew, including about 50 firefighters, were called to the scene. They cordoned off the crash sites.

No-one else was harmed when the planes came down.

Police station attacked - At least 40 people armed with metal bars and fireworks have attacked a police station to the south of Paris. The assailants also tried unsuccessfully to storm the building.

The police station is in an area known for drug trafficking, and the local mayor said the attack could be in retaliation for a recent scooter accident allegedly caused by police.

Meanwhile on Sunday evening France’s Minister of the Interior went to Champigny-sur-Marne to provide support to the police following the attack.

Bernard Tapie - Fifteen months after his acquittal, Bernard Tapie is to face trial in Paris today with five other defendants in the case which granted him 403 million euros in 2008 to settle an old dispute with Credit Lyonnais.

According to his lawyer the 77-year-old businessman and former minister, will be present at the opening of his appeal for "fraud".


Asian markets have started the week with cautious gains as investors cling to hopes of a fresh US stimulus package.

On Sunday ,the Trump administration called on Congress to pass a stripped down coronavirus relief bill although talks on a more comprehensive plan are still at an impasse.

A proposed new White House 1.8 trillion dollar plan has drawn criticism from both Democrats and Republicans but investors seem convinced that a fresh round of spending will go ahead at some point.

Polls showing Joe Biden leading Donald Trump in the US Presidential race are partly underpinning the confidence but much depends on whether Democrats can flip the Senate.

Joe Biden is also seen as being much less likely to trigger fresh Sino-US trade disputes which has helped to drive the yuan up against the dollar.


US energy firms have started returning workers and restoring operations in the Gulf of Mexico two days after Hurricane Delta swept through the region.

It can take several days for companies to evaluate facilities for storm damage ,return workers and restore production.

On Sunday ,the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement said that  91 percent of offshore crude production remains shut in the Gulf of Mexico as a result of the hurricane along with 62.2 percent of natural gas production.

The area produces some 17 percent of US total daily crude output and 5 percent of natural gas production.


And-in the UK ,the EY Item Club has said that the economy may have grown by as much as 17 percent in the three months to the end of September but has warned that slower growth may follow.

Shoppers were out in force during the period as coronavirus restrictions were lifted but growth for the rest of 2020 may be less than 1 percent.

The EY Item Club said that the UK economy has done well to recover faster than expected so far and that consumer spending had bounced back strongly while housing sector activity also saw a pick-up.

However ,the end of the government’s furlough scheme will mean higher unemployment and sluggish growth with the UK economy not expected to regain its pre-pandemic level until the second half of 2023.



Tennis-Rafael Nadal has won a record 13th French Open title in a blistering display against world number one Novak Djokovic in Paris.

Nadal was rarely troubled as he came through in straight sets 6-0 6-2 7-5 and although Djokovic showed signs of a revival in the final set ,he couldn’t live wit the Spaniard who has now equaled Roger Federer’s record of 20 Grand Slam titles.

Formula 1-Lewis Hamilton has opened up a 69 point gap at the top of the drivers’ championship and equaled Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 Grand Prix wins with victory in the Eifel Grand Prix at the Nurburgring in Germany.

The race had promised to be  close fight between the two Mercedes but pole sitter Valtteri Bottas relinquished the race lead on lap 13 and later retired with a failure to part of his hybrid system.

Max Verstappen in the Red Bull finished second with Daniel Ricciardo in the Renault in third.

The next race is the Portugese Grand Prix on the 25th of October.

Football-England beat Belgium 2-1 at Wembley on Sunday to top Nations League group A2 while Scotland stretched their unbeaten run to more than a year as Lyndon Dykes scored the winner in a 1-0 victory over Slovakia to leave Steve Clarke’s side top of Group B2.

The Republic of Ireland and Wales drew 0-0 in Group B4 and France and Portugal drew 0-0 in Group A3.

Rugby Union-The first International Test match to be played since the start of the coronavirus pandemic has ended in a 16 all draw between New Zealand and Australia in the Bledisloe Cup.New Zealand salvaged a draw thanks to Jordie Barrett’s 79th minute penalty as the Wallabies looked set for their first victory in New Zealand for 19 years.

The second of four Bledisloe Cup games is on Sunday the 18th of October.

There was one game in the Guinness Pro 14 on Sunday.Glasgow beat Scarlets 20-7.

Golf-England’s Tyrrell Hatton has won the BMW PGA at Wentworth with a 4 stroke victory.

The 28 year old world number 15 shot a final round of 67 to end on 19 under par with Victor Perez of France ending second on 15 under.

It’s Hatton’s 5th European Tour win and will see him break into the world’s top 10 when the new rankings are updated today.


Clear skies with light to moderate south westerly winds.

Top temperature 20 degrees.

Overnight lows of 13 degrees on the coast and 10 degrees inland with partially cloudy skies.

Tuesday and Wednesday-Mainly fine tomorrow with a high of 20. Sunshine and showers on Wednesday with a high of 18.

And Finally 

A new study has suggested that  texting could be good for your teenager. Researchers say that smartphone addictions may not be as harmful as previously thought.

Scientists believe texting could actually be good for children’s mental health. The study found that youngsters cope better with ups and downs if they can express their feelings to friends via messaging services such as WhatsApp. 

Sharing emotions over text after a demanding event boosted teenagers’ mood, lowered their stress levels and slowed their heart rate.





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