The number of deaths on French roads reached an historic low in 2018. 3,259 people lost their lives, which is nine less than in 2017, according to a statement today by Prime Minister Edouard Philippe. He defended the controversial lowering of the speed limit to 80 km per hour on secondary roads from the 1st of July, saying that there had been 116 fewer lives lost on those roads.
Authorities have said this afternoon that the forest fire which broke out at Tourettes-sur-Loup yesterday has now been extinguished. Firefighters had managed to stabilise the fire overnight with water carrying helicopters being involved in finally extinguishing the fire this morning. Eighty five hectares of forest were destroyed by the fire.
Police are continuing their investigation into the death of a rider on the voie rapide in Nice on Friday afternoon. Several entrances to the road in an eastbound direction are closed today to allow authorities to inspect the area. The voie rapide is expected to be completely closed tonight and tomorrow night from 9pm.
Police in the Var are appealing for anyone who may have information about a local resident who has been missing for six days. Forty-six year old Jean-Charles Bottero was thought to have been riding his bike in the town of Rocbaron not far from mountain bike trails. At the time of his disappearance he was wearing black clothing and riding a red and black bicycle. Anyone with information is asked to contact the police in Brignoles on 04 94 69 03 90.
Nice-Côte-d'Azur airport has announced five new destinations for 2019. Passengers will be able fly direct from Nice to Rennes, Brest, Toulouse, Porto and Malaga. Some of the flights will only operate in summer or winter periods. New flights from Nice to Kuwait City, via Paris, were announced last week.
Nissan has said it’s "co-operating" with an inquiry by US regulators, following reports that the carmaker is being investigated over executive pay disclosures. The carmaker did not give further details about the inquiry. Nissan’s former chairman Carlos Ghosn is facing charges of financial misconduct in Japan.
In the UK, Tesco has announced it will close food counters in 90 of its stores as part of a wider cost-cutting plan that could affect 9,000 staff. It confirmed it will no longer offer a hot food service at its canteens and that head office staff will be cut. The company is aiming to save £1.5bn as the competition between supermarkets intensifies
Clive Selly, the chief executive of Openreach, which is owned by BT, has said that the company is stockpiling equipment in case of a hard Brexit. In other Brexit developments, the heads of many of the UK’s biggest food retailers have signed a letter to the government saying that a no-deal Brexit threatens the UK’s food security and will see higher prices and empty shelves in supermarkets. M&S, Sainsbury, Co-Op, Lidl, Morrisons, KFC, Starbucks and others warn that stockpiling fresh food is impossible and that the UK is very reliant on the EU for produce with 90% of lettuces, 80% of tomatoes and 70% of its soft fruit grown there.
Cricket… India's Ambati Rayudu has been banned from bowling in international cricket because of a suspect bowling action. He was reported after India's one-day international defeat by Australia on 12 January. The ICC said that the suspension will remain in place until he can demonstrate he is able to bowl with a legal action.
Football…Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata has joined Atletico Madrid on loan until the end of the 2019-20 season. The 26-year-old joined Chelsea from Real Madrid in July 2017 for a then club-record fee of £60m on a five-year contract.
Cardiff boss Neil Warnock says he has had his worst week in football after the disappearance of Emiliano Sala. A privately funded search for Sala and pilot David Ibbotson continues after their plane disappeared a week ago near Guernsey. Warnock said that he’s been in football management for 40 years and the past week had been by far the most difficult week in his career. The PSG striker, Kylian Mbappé, has donated 30,000 euros to the fund set up to continue the search for Sala. Many footballers are amongst some 3,700 people who have donated to the appeal.