AND HERE IS THE NEWS…
….a quick glance at the latest local news with Caroline Manson
Volunteers search for man missing on Canigou
There is still no sign of the 62 year old hiker who disappeared on January 26 on the massif du Canigou. The officials have now had to call off the search, which involved a helicopter, mountain rescue squad and the tracker dogs, but his nephew, Romain Martinville, has been organising his own searches. Last weekend, about 30 volunteers traced the known route of the hiker, and this weekend, thanks to the information being diffused on social media, many volunteers gathered at 8am in Valmanya to either lend equipment, use drones, or walk the route.
Poacher discovered with over 100 protected birds
Agents of the French Biodiversity Office caught an individual in the middle of an attempt to catch a protected species of bird in the commune of Rivesaltes. The man was setting up a ‘glue trap’ (if you don’t know what this is, I suggest you don’t Google it) in an area where many protected species of birds regularly land. At his home, they found 106 birds in aviaries. The birds were released back into the wild and the man is due in court where he faces up to 3 years in prison and a fine of 150,000€
Freedom Convoy departs from Claira
Brico-Depot car park was even more congested than usual last week when the first convoy left the Claira Commercial Centre en route to join the protestors in Paris. At least 20 vehicles, encouraged by over 100 protestors were soon joined by dozens of others on the road between Perpignan and Toulouse. They are joining a national protest against the obligatory Health Pass, and more generally against the cost of living.
Skiers blocked when chair-lift breaks down
A breakdown on the only chairlift in the Cambre d’Aze resort in Saint-Pierre-dels-Forcats meant that 44 skiers were suspended mid-air for nearly 2 hours. Firefighters, mountain rescuers and staff from almost all the Catalan ski stations had to intervene, and the passengers were lowered to the ground by cable, one by one. There were no injuries.
Man injured in hunting accident
An accident occurred this Saturday afternoon during a hunting trip at the top of the Vallespir. A 65 year old man firstly shot himself in the leg, seriously injuring his knee, and then fell badly into some rocks. As the group of hunters were in an inaccessible area of the Upper Vallespir, the High Mountain Gendarmerie Platoon had to be called out to evacuate the victim. He was helicoptered to hospital suffering from a fractured arm and a dislocated shoulder, in addition to the gunshot wound.
Fatal accident on D117
Witnesses reported the driver of a car driving erratically on the D117 between Estagel and Case-de-la-Pène on Saturday afternoon. The 77 year old man was driving at moderate speed but zig-zagged across the road and hit the low wall on his right, the car then flipped over and ended up on the other side of the road, where there was a head-on collision with another car. The occupants were a family of 5 from Limoux: the parents and their three children aged 9 months, 3 years and 5 years. The eldest of the children was seriously injured, the other two and their 27 year old mother slightly injured, and only the father came out of the vehicle unscathed. The 77 year driver died at the scene.
A 20 year old man, with already 7 convictions to his name, was released from prison on 22nd January. One week later he was caught offending again – he had given a sob story to a lady at the train station asking to borrow her phone to urgently call his parents – whereupon he promptly ran off with it. When he appeared in court again his only defence was ‘If I don’t steal I don’t eat’ – whereupon the judge suggested that it might be a good idea to use the state allowance that he was given each week to buy food, rather than cannabis and alcohol. He was sentenced to 1 year in prison.