French and Riviera News Friday 22nd November 2019

Local

Ban on tap water in the Alpes Maritimes - The Regional Health Agency the (ARS) has issued a new statement, warning members of the public in Grasse and its surrounding area to avoid drinking tap water. The warning comes following an investigation into a disease transmitted by a parasite which can cause severe stomach upset. 40 people are reported to have been affected by the disease between October 7th and November 12th, while none of the sufferers were hospitalised new cases have been reported following what authorities believe to be the contamination of water from the Foulon canal caused by the recent heavy rainfall.

As authorities await results from test which are currently being carried out, as a precaution, residents in Grasse, Chateauneuf, Mouans-Sartoux, Opio, Roquefort les Pins, Le Rouret and Valbonne are advised to drink bottled water or to boil tap water.

Strike action 5th December - Unions across France have called for a day of national strike on December 5th. Several public services are expected to be affected by the movement including the SNCF, drivers of heavy goods vehicles, lawyers, ground personel at Air France along with employees from the French electricity board EDF, schools and hospitals. The move comes in protest at the government pension reforms.

Bad weather - Meteo France are forecasting bad weather for the Cote d’Azur over the next couple of days. There’s a Yellow warning for storms, heavy rain and flooding for both the Var and the Alpes Maritimes. The Var is on alert this morning with the risk of two months of rain expected in the region.

Customs officers in Menton have seized cigarettes worth 16,000 euros from luggage on a bus. The 117 packets were discovered in the baggage of a Ukranian national who was on board a bus from Bulgaria when it was stopped on the A8 motorway.

Man fined 100 euros for giving 70 centimes to a beggar at a train station - A man from Toulouse has been fined 100 euros for giving 70 centimes to a beggar at a train station in the city. Approached by SNCF police he was informed that begging in public places is prohibited and he was liable for a fine. “Amazed” by the information the man went ahead and handed the coins to the beggar leading to one of the officer issuing a fine of double the flat rate of 50 euros. Following the publication of the incident in French media the regional director of the SNCF indicated that the fine would be canceled and recognizes " a clumsiness "on the part of the railway police team.

National

First CRS officer to face trial following yellow vest protests - A CRS officer has become the first member of the security forces to face trial after numerous allegations of police brutality during the past year of yellow vest protests. The Paris prosecutor has recommended a 3-month suspended sentence for a policeman for hurling a paving stone at protesters during a Yellow Vest rally. The SGP police union has accused the Paris prosecutor of trying to make a "scapegoat" of the 44-year-old officer and argued that he had acted in self-defence. The accused was caught on camera throwing a stone during May Day protests.

Emmanuel Macron visits Amiens - French president Emmanuel Macron has visited his hometown of Amiens to reconnect with the people. The start of his visit was marred by protests from laid-off factory workers, whom Emmanuel Macron had promised to keep in their jobs. The visit, has been billed as the "most important territorial visit" since 2018, when the French president made a 14-stop tour of towns, cities and battlefield sites of the First World War.

Cyber-attack on hospital - A cyber-attack on a hospital in Rouen has caused very long delays in care. The incident which occurred last week saw medical staff at the French city's University Hospital Centre (CHU) forced to abandon PCs instead, staff returned to the "old-fashioned method of paper and pencil". According to the hospital no patients were endangered as a result of the cyber-attack and no medical or personal data had gone missing.

Red panda escapes from zoo - French Authorities are searching for a red panda that escaped from a zoo in south-eastern France. Staff at St-Martin-la-Plaine zoo near Lyon say the endangered animal escaped by scaling branches broken by recent snowfall. A Facebook post has asked residents to keep an eye out for the red panda but warned people not to try to catch it.

Business

The troubled office rental company WeWork is cutting 2,400 jobs worldwide in an effort to stem growing losses.

The move follows the dramatic collapse of the firm’s plans to raise money by listing on the stock market.

The latest development is part of a rescue plan by Softbank which has bailed WeWork out to the tune of 9.5 billion dollars and will soon own 80 percent of the firm’s stock.

The job cuts represent 20 percent of WeWork’s global workforce.

The firm lost nearly a billion dollars in the first half of the year and had been facing questions about its finance and governance.

WeWork rents office space to freelancers and businesses and expanded rapidly from a single office in New York to more than 500 locations around the world.At the end of June it had some 12,500 employees.

 

The electric carmaker Tesla has unveiled its first pickup truck marking a long-awaited expansion to its product line-up.

Chief Executive Elon Musk unveiled the new vehicle in Los Angeles on Thursday and the firm hopes that it will finally start posing real competition to the big manufacturers in Detroit.

The new truck is futuristic looking and resembles an armoured vehicle which Mr Musk says won’t scratch.

The first of the new so called “Cybertrucks” will roll off the production line either in late 2021 or early 2022 and will carry a starting price of under 50,000 dollars.

It will be the 6th vehicle manufactured by Tesla but its first pickup truck.

 

And-The Conservative Party in the UK says that it will impose a 3 percent stamp duty surcharge for non-British tax residents who buy property if it wins the general election.

The Party feels that foreign buyers have been inflating property prices  and the new levy would apply to individuals and businesses as well as ex-pats wishing to move back home.

The Conservatives have produced data which suggests that as many as one in 8 new London homes were bought by non-residents in the period between 2014 and 2016.

The stamp duty pledge came as the Labour Party promised to build 150,000 ne council and social homes a year by the end of the next parliament.

Sport

Cricket-It’s stumps on day 2 of the first Test between New Zealand and England at Tauranga.

New Zealand had the best of the first part of the day ,removing the last 6 England wickets for 76 runs as the Tourists were bowled out for 353 in their first innings with Ben Stokes top scoring on 91.

England were among the wickets themselves though in the afternoon and removed 4 New Zealand wickets including the prize scalp of skipper Kane Williamson who went for 51.

At stumps the home side had reached 144-4  trailing England by  209.     

It’s day 2 of the first Test between Australia and Pakistan at the GABBA in Brisbane.

Pakistan were bowled out for 240 in the first innings on day one and the home side had moved on to 217 without loss in reply with David Warner not out 114 and Joe Burns on 94.

Football-The English Premier League is back in action this weekend following the international break with Jose Mourinho taking charge of his first game for Spurs as they visit West Ham in the early game tomorrow.

Also tomorrow Arsenal play Southampton.Bournemouth host Wolves.Brighton play Leicester.Crystal Palace host the leaders Liverpool.Everton play Norwich.Watford face Burnley and Manchester City play Chelsea.

On Sunday  Sheffield United play Manchester United.Aston Villa play Newcastle on Monday.

Motorsport-The New Formula E season kicks off in Saudi Arabia with a double header today and tomorrow.

The new season features 14 races in 12 cities on four continents spread over the next 9 months.

Jean Eric Vergne is the current world champion but he’ll be facing a stiff challenge from the German manufacturers Porsche and Mercedes with Audi also champing at the bit to regain the world championship.

Tennis-Great Britain are into the quarter finals of the Davis Cup after beating Kazakhstan 2-1 in the group phase.

Team GB will now play Germany today for a place in the last 4.

Canada are already through to the semi finals after beating Australia 2-1 and will now face either Russia or Serbia on Saturday.

Serbia play Russia today to see who’ll progress.

Rugby Union-There’s more action in the European Champions Cup this weekend with Ulster playing Clermont Auvergne in Pool 3 tonight.

There are some good looking ties tomorrow including Lyon against Leinster in Pool  1 and the all English clash between Harlequins and Bath in Pool  3 while Munster host Racing 92 in Pool  4 and Exeter meet Glasgow in Pool 2.

Golf-Michael Lorenzo Vera of France leads heading into the second round of the World Tour Championship in Dubai with Rory McIlroy in second place.

Lorenzo Vera fired the lowest ever opening round to end with a 9 under par 63 with McIlroy on 8 under.

Tommy Fleetwood who’s currently second in the Race to Dubai is in equal 4th place on 5 under.

He’ll be crowned as Europe’s top golfer if current leader Bernd Wiesburger ends outside the top two.

Weather

Overcast with rain and  moderate to strong easterly winds.

Top temperature 15 degrees.

Overnight lows of 13 degrees with more rain and scattered thunderstorms.

The weekend-Overcast with more rain tomorrow.Sunshine and showers on Sunday.Highs of 15-17 degrees.

 

Finally 

According to a global study teenagers in South Korea  are the laziest in the world. A country-by-country breakdown of physical activity levels has revealed just one in five 11 to 17-year-olds get as much exercise as they need to to stay healthy.

In some countries, led by South Korea and including the Philippines, Cambodia and Sudan, more than 90 per cent of teenagers are inactive.

In the UK 79.9 per cent of teenagers do 'insufficient physical activity', the report said. Meanwhile the US outperformed almost every country on Earth with just 72 per cent of children inactive – higher only than Bangladesh, Slovakia and Ireland.

Experts said the statistics were 'concerning' and that encouraging exercise is vital for tackling the most dangerous child health concern – obesity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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