Lunchtime News Friday 3rd July

New radar-A new generation speed camera has been erected on the RD560 between Saint-Maximin and Seillen-Source- d’Argens in the Var.

The previous radar in the area was burned and destroyed by yellow vest protestors in December last year but the new one is capable of detecting other offences apart from speeding including use of a mobile phone and not wearing a seat belt.

However , it’s not clear whether the new radar is active or one of a number of ‘decoy’ devices erected around France to dissuade motorists from committing an offence. Best not to find out !

 

Take cover- Emergency services have been called to a beach at Antibes-les-Pins after a bather found a small anti sonar warhead.

Authorities say that the small device dates from later than the 2ND World War probably manufactured in 1967.

The bather picked the device up and put it in a rubbish bin.The beach was sealed off while bomb disposal experts neutralised the device.

 

Weather alert-The Alpes-Maritimes has been placed on a yellow weather alert again with storms forecast this afternoon.

The bad weather should be restricted to inland areas but some thunder is possible in coastal areas.

A strong Mistral wind is forecast for the Var.

The weather warning is in force until 10pm.

 

Cannes half-marathon-Registration is now open for the Cannes half-marathon which was due to be held on the 1st of March but was postponed because of the coronavirus crisis.

The race will now be held on Sunday the 20th of September and is open to a maximum number of 4,500 runners.

A shorter 5k course is also open for registration.

 

Suspects remanded-A couple who violently assaulted a female municipal police officer in Nice earlier this week have appeared in court.

The couple ,both aged 22 are said to have bitten and pulled the hair of the officer and pushed her to the ground on the avenue de la Californie after they’d been apprehended for a series of traffic accidents.

The female officer suffered head injuries after being pushed to the ground and is still receiving hospital treatment.

The couple have been remanded in custody pending sentencing.

 

In National News.

 

BREAKING-The Elysee Palace has announced that Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has resigned today with immediate effect.

Rumours concerning Mr Philippe’s future have been circulating for several weeks and his resignation comes as President Macron moves to kick-start the remaining two years of his term in office.

A major cabinet reshuffle is underway with new appointments set to be announced in the coming hours and days.

 

Depakine-A French court has ordered the state to pay thousands of euros in compensation to families and victims of birth defects caused by the anti-epilepsy drug Depakine.

The government has been held responsible and ordered it to pay damages to three families who filed complaints after pregnant women took the medicine which was manufactured by Sanofi.

Depakine resulted in several children being born with congenital malformations ,autism and learning difficulties.

The sums awarded to the victims range from 157,000 to 200,000 euros based on the dates of birth of five children affected who are now aged between 11 and 35.

The court ruled that the state had failed in its duty to enforce laws intended to inform the public by warning them of potential dangers.

Some 30,000 children were affected by the scandal.

Depakine is used in the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder and is still available but with strict prescription limitations.

 

Sunscreen-Two french environmental groups have flagged dangers about several brands of sunscreens marketed for children.

Acting for the Environment and WECF France say that studies on sun creams ,sprays and milks turned up 29 potentially dangerous chemicals and the brands should be banned.

71 products were tested between March and June and none was deemed to be totally risk free.

Products contained endocrine disrupters ,carcinogens ,neotoxins ,neoparticles and allergens.

The non-governmental organisations are calling on the French Agency for Food ,Environment and Occupational Health Safety to look at the risk-to benefit ratio of using potentially harmful products to protect against sun damage.

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