French and Riviera News Thursday 11 October 2018


Bad weather, one person missing – At least one person has been reported missing after seven departments in the South of France were put on a weather alert. The motorist is believed to have been washed out to sea at the wheel of her vehicle, as the banks of the Garonnette River in Saint Maxime rose rapidly due to heavy rainfall on Wednesday night. The Var has been particular badly hit with one month’s worth of rain falling in just a few hours causing flooding in some areas inland and several campsites along the coast. The Prefect of the Var Jean-Luc Videlaine has warned that there could be more victims as a result of the bad weather which has hit the region over the last 24 hours adding that the Prefecture is on standby to evacuate campsites if necessary. Heavy rainfall continued this morning in the Var, the Alpes-Maritimes and southern Corsica, which remain on alert with conditions expected to improve gradually throughout the day.

Motorway accident - One person has been killed and two others seriously injured as a result of the terrible accident which occurred on Wednesday morning on the A8 motorway. Shortly after 7am two trucks collided with a car westbound at Roquebrune sur Argens. The incident caused long delays and resulted in the motorway being closed while emergency services intervened.

Online petition - An online petition launched by local MP Eric Ciotti to make part of the A8 motorway toll-free has reached over 25,000 signatures in the week since its launch. The speed limit between Cagnes-sur-Mer and Saint Laurent-du-Var has been reduced to 90 km per hour since last week.  The petition, at says that Nice is the only city in France where it is necessary to pay a toll to pass from one area of the city to another and that the toll at St Isadore should therefore be removed.


Government reshuffle postponed until Friday  - For over a week now France has been without an Interior Minister, as the government is set to announce a major cabinet reshuffle on Friday. The hesitation around the new cabinet appointments is seen as a sign of Macron's growing weakness. French President Emmanuel Macron delayed a hotly awaited cabinet reshuffle Wednesday due to difficulties in finding new ministers. Macron has endured a torrid few months since a scandal involving a security aide in July, which helped push his popularity ratings down to historic lows. The damage from the scandal was compounded in September when high-profile environment minister Nicolas Hulot quit and he was followed by Interior Minister Gerard Collomb on October 3. The departure of Collomb, one of Macron's earliest political backers, was a symbolic blow that has forced the unplanned and unwanted reshuffle.

Trip to Ikea ends in police custody - A shopping trip to Ikea in North eastern France has turned into a nightmare for a 21 year old student and her father, after the pair were taken into police custody for forgetting to scan items at an automatic checkout. After apologizing and offering to pay. The security officer and store manager called the police resulting in the father and daughter spending three hours in a police cell. Ikea France has since apologized for the incident adding that “they always favour dialogue and sincerely regret the situation”.  


President Trump has renewed his criticism of US Federal Reserve interest rate policy following Wednesday’s sharp falls on Wall Street.

Responding to the biggest stock market falls since February,Mr Trump said that the Fed is making a mistake by going so tight.He added that the Fed had “gone crazy”.

The President has broken with the policy of his recent predecessors of not commenting on the Federal Reserve’s interest rate policy.

Last night,he said that the Wall Street falls were the “correction that we’ve all been waiting for” and that he disagreed with what the Fed was doing.

Analysts say that Wednesday’s declines were a delayed reaction to the sharp move higher in US interest rates.There was also a strong element of profit taking with investors wanting to take some time out on the sidelines and re-evaluate where they want to be at the end of the year.


A report in the Financial Times has suggested that James Murdoch could become the next chairman of the electric carmaker Tesla.

The report says that Mr Murdoch is the favourite to replace Elon Musk who will have to give up the chairmanship to resolve a fraud claim by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

James Murdoch joined the Tesla board last year.A previous report in the New York Times also suggested that he was being considered for the role of chairman.

Elon Musk denied the FT claims in a tweet last night.He said that the story was “incorrect”.


And-The EU Commissioner Pierre Moscovici has said that a new tax on technology giants including Amazon,Facebook and Google could be in place by Christmas.

Mr Moscovici,who oversees tax policy for the European Commission said that good progress was being made but warned that if a deal wasn’t struck by the end of the year then it would probably have to be shelved until the end of 2019.

Mr Mosvovici needs the agreement of all 28 EU member states for the new tax and said on Thursday that both France and Germany had made it clear that they wanted a deal before the end of the year.

He said that as next year would be dominated by other issues such as Brexit,the European Parliament elections in May and the appointment of a new set of Commissioners,it was unlikely that the tech tax could be sorted in 2019 if no deal was reached by Christmas.


Football-Christiano Ronaldo’s lawyer has said that rape allegations against his client have been “completely fabricated”.

The 33 year old Portugal and Juventus star denies raping Kathryn Mayorga at a Las Vegas hotel in 2009.

She claims that she was attacked by the star in a hotel room but a statement from Ronaldo’s lawyer Peter Christiansen reiterated that he “vehemently denies all accusations in the civil action”.

The rape allegation was first reported in Germany’s Der Spiegel and Mr Christiansen says that the newspaper  based its reports on “stolen and easily manipulated digital documents”.

He added that Ronaldo maintains that what happened in Las Vegas in 2009 was “completely consensual”.

There are several games in the Uefa Nations League tonight.Scotland are away at Israel in Group C1 while Russia host Sweden in Group B2  and Poland play Portugal in Group A3.

Cricket-The first one day international between Sri Lanka and England was washed out by rain on Wednesday.

England were on 92-2 in the 15th over when the rains came.Play was later abandoned because of a wet outfield.

Australia are battling to save the first Test against Pakistan in Dubai heading into day 5.

At the close of play on day 4 Australia were on 136-3 in their second innings still needing an unlikely 326 to win the match on the final day.

Golf-Lee Westwood says that Padraig Harrington should be the next Europe Ryder Cup captain.

Westwood has ruled himself out of the captaincy for 2020  and says that he’d like to be playing in two years time.

He said that Harrington would be ideal for the captaincy and that he’d prefer to wait until Rome in 2022.

Racing-Fences and hurdles in British racing are set for a major change after it was discovered that horses see colours different  to humans.

At the moment,the framework for the jumps is painted orange but research has shown that horses see the colour as a shade of green.

Horse racing authorities have now agreed to try fluorescent yellow and white markers to aid visibility.



Heavy showers at times this morning with some sunny period developing this afternoon.

Moderate easterly winds and a high of 22 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 17 degrees on the coast and 15 degrees inland with partially cloudy skies.

Friday and the start of the weekend-Mainly fine with a high of 23-24 degrees.





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