Residents of the Guadalhorce Valley will be able to have their vehicles ITV-tested closer to home in (hopefully) the not-too-distant future. Cartama Town Hall has just approved the construction of a new industrial estate half-way between Cartama town and Estacion de Cartama, which will include an official ITV test centre. The Town Hall spokesman who announced the project last week did not say when work would begin on the project.
A 24-year-old British man, identified only by the initials L.W., died in a car crash involving three vehicles on the A7 near the Palacio de Ferias y Congresos, direction Torremolinos, at 2.20am last Sunday morning. Six people were injured in the accident, three of them seriously. Two of them had to be freed from the wreckage by firemen. Police said one car had hit the central reservation before ploughing into two other cars.
Some 10,000 motorcyclists blocked the streets in the centre of Madrid last Saturday when they staged their 3rd National Motorbike Demonstration to back their demands for the removal of safety barriers which they claim are fatal for motorcyclists. As if to highlight their claim, a motorcyclist died after he crashed into a safety barrier just outside Madrid only hours before the demonstration started. Before setting out from the Santiago Bernabeu football stadium, the participants observed a minute’s silence for that death and the 500 motorcyclists who died on Spain’s roads in the past 12 months. Their other demands included the use of non-slip paint on the roads, a general resurfacing and the suppression of the new €1,500 motorbike purchase tax. A spokesman for Unidad Motera (Motorcyclist Union) said the latest measures adopted by the Traffic Authority, such as raising the minimum age for driving a motorbike to 16 or a tougher driving test, only made owning a bike more expensive without teaching the driver the necessary skills. Smaller demonstrations were held in other cities across the country.
The first case of a brown bear being killed on the road was confirmed last week by the foundation set up to protect the species. The Brown Bear Foundation said a young male was hit by a lorry early last Tuesday morning on the A-6 highway in Trabadelo, Leon province. Apparently the animal had climbed over the fence protecting the bear sanctuary in Alto Sil. A spokesman for the Brown Bear Association said: “The young males love exploring and it’s not unusual for them to stray.” He said there are only 130 brown bears in the north of Spain and that Alto Sil was a major reproductive area.
A new regulation introduced last week stipulates that taxes and other extra charges can no longer be hidden in advertising for airline tickets. Airlines have to show the final price in all their publicity from now on, with fuel surcharges and airport taxes included. The regulation is part of an EU initiative designed to allow the public to better compare offers in the marketplace.
Fines for speeding dropped drastically in Malaga province in the first six months of this year – down to 28,551 as opposed to 43,293 in the same period last year. A spokesman for the provincial Traffic Authority said this was due to the seven installed radar controls and the points system. He said another seven radars will be installed in the near future. Meanwhile, the Guardia Civil traffic patrols have launched a campaign to enforce the correct use of lanes on the highways and of indicators. The spokesman said it was to make drivers more aware of the fact that they should stick to the right-hand lane unless they were going to overtake. He said the incorrect use of the left-hand lane caused back-ups and slowed down the traffic.
Ryanair announced last week that it will close all its operations at Valencia Airport following a row with the Generalitat regional government over subsidies. Ryanair had sought funding to increase its operations at the airport, but the Generalitat said there was no money. Ryanair Deputy Chairman, Michael Cawley, said the Generalitat had refused to meet with them. He said it was “a very black day for Valencia Airport”. Ryanair operates 70 flights a week from the airport to Stansted, East Midlands and Liverpool, among other destinations. It takes 750,000 passengers a year at Valencia where some 750 jobs could now be lost, although the airline said it wants to transfer the workers to its other bases in Spain – at Madrid, Reus, Alicante and Girona. Flights from ten routes to Bolonia, East Midland, Eindhoven, Liverpool, Maastricht, Malta, Oporto, Paris Beauvais and Santiago de Compostela will be cancelled from November 4th, and passengers will be offered a full refund.