Covid-19, drought, travelers, road safety … The prefect of the Alpes-Maritimes is preparing for an exciting summer

The health situation is deteriorating, are you worried?
We see an incidence rate of 1,361 per. 100,000 inhabitants this week, compared to 1,071 last week and 812 the week before. Which means we regularly double down. This is very worrying because at the same time we have increasing positivity. We went from 22.5 to 27.3.

Fortunately, we only have seven patients in intensive care. Considering the brewing of the summer, the numbers may increase. Caution is required, especially for the most vulnerable people, with special care for those who do not have their vaccination plan updated.

Christian Estrosi, Mayor of Nice, tried to force wearing a mask in public transport, Jean Leonetti, Mayor of Antibes, urges you to take departmental action …
So there I must say that I am glad to hear elected officials call for measures of a departmental nature; I remember that each and every one of them had previously requested treatment on a case-by-case basis. A measure, the more generalized it is, the more effective it is.

Jean Leonetti’s comments are completely understandable. We started consultations with the local communities last week. It is clear that there is promiscuity in transport. But at the moment, I am in favor of consultation with elected representatives.

No decree planned in the immediate future?
While I’m talking to you, no. But the situation is changing.

I urge all those who come in contact with nature to be very careful

With this unusual drought, the fires are evolving …
This is a very strong concern. The drought in the department is significant, the precipitation deficit is 50% compared to the average. This is the second driest year since 1959. The situation is almost historic. We are on heightened vigilance. Every day, the risk level is analyzed per. massive.

We have up to 500 prepositioned firefighters. Permanent guard is exercised. We have our own air defense with water-carrying helicopters. In view of the situation, I urge all those who come into contact with nature to be extremely careful.

The department has been exposed to many fatal accidents this year …
We have actually recorded seven deaths since the beginning of the year, including six at sea and one in a swimming pool, as well as 48 interventions to retrieve people in difficulty. Sometimes there is ruthlessness, ruthlessness, people swimming too far, others bathing unattended. In these deaths, the proportion of older people is enormous: 80% worry swimmers over the age of 65, who sometimes overestimate their abilities.

We want to strengthen the control of these machines, which are often uninhibited

The death toll on the road is dramatic this year. What are the latest figures?
We have already registered 28 traffic fatalities since January. It’s significantly more: last year we were 17 killed in the same period. Among the victims are five pedestrians, three cyclists, thirteen motorized two-wheeled pilots and seven drivers of passenger cars.

How do you explain this spectacular increase and what will the reaction be?
We note that this year it is the resumption of all desires, of an appetite for life. But the concept of pleasure sometimes seems to take precedence over safety. We want to step up the repression. Since the beginning of the week, I have launched an operation centered on motorized two-wheeled vehicles.

We see deviant behavior. More than 630 driving licenses have been revoked for speeds exceeding 50 km / h since the beginning of the year in the department. The number of accidents does not increase as much, it is the speed that increases, leading to more serious accidents. There is also the problem of road sharing.

In this context, we are thinking of the fatal accidents caused by scooters, such as this child who was killed in Nice last week …
This drama is a terrible illustration of this. We want to strengthen the control of these machines, which are often uninhibited. The pilots must be equipped: there are few helmets, few light signals. We will also train those who rent. They need to help us if they want to see their business grow.

What is the situation with regard to immigration?
We still have a significant flow at the border between the crossings of the Mediterranean and the Balkan route. Before we order to leave the territory, we practice on a lot of non-admissions. We are at 14,000 since the beginning of the year.

It is a little less than last year, because at the beginning of the year the crossing conditions were not good. In recent weeks, the flow has been very high. In deportations to their country, many countries have been closed because of Covid. Great diplomatic efforts are being made to allow the return. Remedies that we respect also slow down procedures considerably.

We were going through a phase of requisitioning private land

As every year, the department faces the problem of receiving travelers. Is it infinite?
It is a situation that does not surprise us. For several months, we have been receiving letters announcing major passages asking for ground clearance. For more than three years, I have been trying to promote the branch scheme to welcome travelers, to get suggestions from communities.

We are behind in the department. Travelers have therefore decided to target the Alpes-Maritimes this year. It was planned, announced, and despite several meetings, we are unfortunately confronted with the arrival of these travelers without the local communities having a suggestion. We were going through a phase of requisitioning private land.

Will you have to impose an agenda on local communities?
I do not rule anything out. The next step would be the requisition of public land. We must be able to live up to the obligations of the law. For my part, I am in favor of consensus. I feel progress in some. What is happening this year should enable us to have suggestions on the table during our final summer meeting. If nothing is done, we will move in the direction of requisitioning public land.

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