Consumer confidence stronger in June

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Consumer confidence rose strongly in June, from 1.80 in May to 2.06, the latest figures from bank UBS show. The figures, release 30 June, show that consumption rose during the second quarter of 2014. Retail figures for the first half of the year show the highest level of spending since 2009, a […]

Swiss environmental impact abroad rising

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BERN, SWITZERLAND – The good news is that Swiss consumers have significantly reduced their environmental impact in recent years. The bad news is that it’s being exported to others countries. A study by the federal government, released 29 July, shows that between 1996 and 2011 the environmental impact of Swiss consumers on the environment outside […]

Italian biker released after going 161kph on Simplon

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – A 31-year-old Italian man was caught by a radar doing 161kph on his motorcycle at the Simplon pass, in an area where the limit is 80. Canton Valais police say he was given a hefty fine and an indefinite ban on driving in Switzerland before being released. He nevertheless faces criminal charges […]

UBS posts profit, but French legal case open

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Switzerland’s largest bank, UBS, 29 July reported second quarter profits of CHF792 million, up 15 percent over the same period in 2013. the bank settled its outstanding case and fines with Germany, but now faces new demands from France, with a CHF1.1 billion guarantee due by August, an amount the bank this […]

Travel alert: flooding, rain, affecting train schedules

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GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Heavy rain in several areas of the country Monday night could have an impact on rail travel Tuesday, with some lines around Lucerne already affected Monday evening. You can check for updates on the CFF rail traffic information page, in English.

California beach hit by lightning – know the basics

Rainy weather and thunderstorms, common in Switzerland in July

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND / EDITOR’S NOTEPAD – One person has died and several people were injured, one critically, when four separate direct lightning strikes hit a crowded beach at Venice Beach in California Sunday afternoon. Police estimate that 20,000 people were on the beach near Los Angeles when unusual conditions created a sudden thunderstorm that lasted […]

Rain and more rain on the way

Rain en route, Valais, noon Monday

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – If you haven’t been outside yet today, go now! The forecast for all of Switzerland is for rain and more rain starting this afternoon or evening and continuing until Thursday, with very heavy showers due Wednesday. In Valais this morning the sun was shining and temperatures were perfect – but big billowing […]

100 extra trains for Zurich’s Street Parade

Inland – Street Parade 2012 (Matthias Keller/Amiado Online AG)

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Zurich mean party-time next weekend, with the national First of August celebrations followed the day after by the city’s hugely popular Street Parade, a giant dance and techno fête. The CFF/SBB rail company is adding 100 trains 2 August to carry the crowds. Extra trains will leave for Zurich during the afternoon […]

Open letter to a fool on a motorbike

Villeneuve A9 bridge being demolished, spring 2014

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – If you cover police news regularly, as I do, it’s impossible not to notice the number of motorcycle accidents. A 25-year-old man was sent to hospital in Geneva in critical condition Saturday shortly after 18:00 when he lost control of his bike on the rue de Chêne-Bougeries, touched the corner of a […]

Police on roadworks safety awareness campaign

The A9 heading between Lausanne and Villeneuve: plan on taking a little more time with roadworks this summer

LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND – This is high season for roadworks in Switzerland, especially noticeable on autoroutes, which are some of the best-maintained in Europe. Drivers don’t always appreciate the reasons behind lower speed limits if their travel time is significantly longer, so police are setting out this week to make sure we understand the safety issues […]