23rd October 2017

SCHOOL BOOKS INFO

Education Minister Claude Meisch on Friday revealed more about the government’s move to provide free schoolbooks for schoolchildren.  This will apply to the textbooks which form part of the nationally approved syllabus.  To make life easier for parents, the relevant books can simply be ordered over an internet portal education.lu/schoolbooks.  The bill for the books will then be sent direct to the education ministry.  Schools wanting to use other books must arrange for these themselves, after getting approval from the ministry.  The changes come into effect for the start of the 2018 school year.

FATAL ACCIDENT

A man died in an accident on Saturday night in Dudelange.  He lost control of his car on the Rue de Noertzange shortly before midnight and collided with a tree.  He was thrown out of the vehicle by the impact, and died at the scene of the accident.  A passenger with him sustained non-life threatening injuries in the crash. 

EMPLOYMENT REPORT
The employment report for Septmeber showed there were around 15 900 people out of work.  That is around 600 fewer than this time a year ago.  It means the current unemployment rate is 6%    46% of people registered unemployed at ADEM have been out of work for over a year, despite this number falling in absolute terms for much of the year.

DYNAMIC SPEED CONTROLS

The government is to study whether flexible speed limits on motorways could help reduce congestion.  Many motorways in Europe, particularly around cities and conurbations, employ dynamic speed controls.  The theory is that by slowing traffic down, more vehicles can be accommodated on the same stretch of road.  It also reduces the tendency of vehicles to brake sharply, which is often the seed which starts a traffic jam.  The Highways Authority has said no concrete plans are yet in place for a study, but it is something they would like to look into sooner rather than later.

NEW FERRY

The new ferry to link Wasserbillig with Germany was completed at the week-end.  The Santa Maria 2 replaces its namesake, which had been in service for 50 years.  The new 28 meter long ferry can accommodate 45 people and 6 cars.  The vessel is completely electric, with much of the charge powered by solar cells, and is the first one of its kind to come into operation anywhere.  It will come into service in around a month’s time after undergoing trials first in Sweden, where it was built.