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jonno

French road blockades

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Being discussed on caravanning forums as well..seems to be very well organised and covers most of France and into the southern part of Belgium.. possible up to Zeebrugge..latest I saw was it going on for up to 4 days..

  Brittany seems particularly militant..all due to the French President sticking massive increases onto road fuel..no wonder he's not popular.

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A large number of markets, sporting events and concerts have been cancelled for today due to the uncertainty involved in getting around. Several supermarkets have also announced they will be closed and a large number of filling stations will not be open in support of the protesters. The main routes are likely to be blocked, possibly access to the channel tunnel and big bridges too. The general advice seems to be : don't go anywhere if you don't need to, and if you do, be prepared for lengthy delays and diversions. Ed. 

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We would typically have done a pre Christmas 24hr trip around now but Mrs B vetoed it due to the constant disruptions of one sort or another.

We will be visiting the Winchester Christmas Market instead.

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So one protester has died. I hope the organisers feel it was worth it. I believe only a small number of the planned protests have been officially sanctioned by the regional prefects meaning that the rest will be less strictly run and without any police presence to oversee the blockades. 😒 Ed. 

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8 minutes ago, Cabin-boy said:

So one protester has died. I hope the organisers feel it was worth it. I believe only a small number of the planned protests have been officially sanctioned by the regional prefects meaning that the rest will be less strictly run and without any police presence to oversee the blockades. 😒 Ed. 

according to a Truckers site I have just been reading, the Gendarmarie have openly said they will not be issuing PV`s (fines) for obstruction, as they are in support of the action!!..Any reports from where you live Ed?

Edited by Paully

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The protests are ongoing today and, although fewer in number than on Saturday and Sunday, have now started targeting fuel depots as well. If anyone is coming to France, fill your tank before arriving just in case, allow plenty of time to get to the ports on your return trip and check the online maps to know where the blockades are. Having spoken to one protester (back at work this morning) he said that Saturday was just a warm-up exercise. At least two large shopping centres in Angers shut their doors on Saturday and may be forced to do so again next weekend. I suspect the city centre sites like in Cherbourg will be OK but the out of town centres may well experience difficulties in the run up to Christmas. Ed. 

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I don’t suppose that too many on here will be heading down this far (to southern France) at this time of the year.

However, if by any chance you are ............ it isn’t good at the moment !  My impression is that its been worse today than over the weekend, probably because more heavy lorries have been in circulation.

For us, its one of those times when you stay put and don’t even think about trying to go too far.   Gendarmerie leaving them to it, as usual.

 

 

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Just to reinforce Cabin-boy’s point about fuel availability, I’ve just learned that most stations around here have run dry!

Again, problems down here won’t matter to most of you at this time of the year, but there’s every reason to expect problems too in Normandy, Brittany and so on.

 

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Thanks for the update. I heard on the radio (France Info) this morning that permission had been given to clear protesters from the depot gates and allow supplies to continue. That may take some time to have an effect, especially if people have been panic-buying. In the meantime if rationing is imposed at those stations with fuel it's likely to be 20 litres maximum per customer and the automatic pumps will be shut off at night. So anyone hoping to fill up will need to do so while the payment booth is still open. A usual I suspect the motorways will still be well stocked as they seem to have priority. Ed. 

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Out of interest I disembarked from Bretagne in Saint-Malo this morning expecting aggro and there was nobody to be seen from there to Roscoff, so it seems to have calmed down for now. We sent a van to deliver in Cherbourg today, again no problem although the Saint-Lô junction (40) on the A84 was still affected so I directed him through Percy instead. I have a feeling the cold weather seems to have got the better of most strikers and fuel appears to be in plentiful supply, long may it continue...:)

Chris

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Yes, it's tailed off somewhat here to due, as you suggested, to the cold most likely. There is the possibility of an increase tomorrow as lots of people take Fridays off and targeting shopping centres on Black Friday might make for good headlines. Don't discount a rerun of what we saw last Saturday this weekend. Ed. 

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Things have suddenly become more dramatic here in Angers this evening. A man armed with, what he says is, a grenade is involved in a stand off with the police at a petrol station demanding that President Macron meets representatives of the Yellow Jacket movement at the Palace. 😕

https://www.bfmtv.com/police-justice/intervention-du-raid-a-angers-un-homme-pretend-detenir-des-explosifs-et-demande-que-les-gilets-jaunes-soient-recus-a-l-elysee-1573096.html

Ed

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Would their be a website that gives info of were and when roads are closed off, as I'm due to go from Le Havre week Tuesday.

Thank you for any info.

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Hi

There are plenty of websites/news bulletins here in France but for obvious reasons the language barrier will stump most people.

I suggest you either PM me tomorrow afternoon (I’m doing Caen-Portsmouth in the morning)) to say where you’re heading and I’ll do my best to help. You could also try www.cabin-boy.com (Ed), but remember this is a pretty unique event with no one person or union orchestrating events. The « gilets jaunes «  can appear anywhere and at anytime, then disappear just as quickly. 

I look forward to hearing from you...

Chris

Edited by Fine Whine

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I second what Chris says. The situation is very fluid and so far I haven't found any one list or programme detailing the Yellow Jacket's movements. They can for example block a roundabout for 20 minutes and then let the traffic flow again for the following 20 minutes, hence my warning about leaving plenty of time when getting anywhere. The best solution seems to be to use Waze as members of the community add alerts as and when they come across problems. Ed. 

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Thank you for your reply's.

Living here is fine until something like this happens, to which I do understand how they feel.

I am due to collect a car a week this Tuesday, and in doing so I use the local bus, which leaves at 7:50 am and get me to the port in 25 min's all at a low cost of 2 euro's much less then the toll bridge it self, so I'm still hoping fingers crossed it will be over but in France, it may well take until next year to sort the problem.

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3 minutes ago, Eddies said:

Thank you for your reply's.

Living here is fine until something like this happens, to which I do understand how they feel.

I am due to collect a car a week this Tuesday, and in doing so I use the local bus, which leaves at 7:50 am and get me to the port in 25 min's all at a low cost of 2 euro's much less then the toll bridge it self, so I'm still hoping fingers crossed it will be over but in France, it may well take until next year to sort the problem.

Are you talking about the 'Pont de Normandie' Bridge? I heard there have been problems with protesters blocking the bridge so make sure you check beforehand. Ed. 

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Yes that's the Bridge, I have found this out before when it was to late and ended up walking 45 K to get home and it was closed for 3 days the only other thing is to get my local bus to Honfleur, the walk into Le Havre, which is then only 30 K's, I'll just have to be late.

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6 minutes ago, wortley said:

I'm impressed. But the trains will be running - are you near a station? 

I don't believe Honfleur has a station. The nearest would probably be in Pont L'Eveque and you would end up having to do a massive detour via Rouen to get to Le Havre. It might be quicker to walk, or even better cycle and then stick the bike in the car for the return journey. The only problem with that is the two bridges into Le Havre are some of the steepest you'll find anywhere. Ed. 

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