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People sending aid to families of soldiers killed

People are sending money in aid of the families of the three soldiers killed in Afghanistan on Sunday. According to the head of the Military Solidarity Fund, Lenka Šmerdová, news of the soldiers deaths sparked a strong wave of solidarity with thousands of people sending money to a special account. Over 1.2 million crowns has been collected so far.

People’s hearts have gone out in particular to the young widow of Corporal Kamil Beneš who gave birth to their first child – a son – just a week after her husband left on his mission. He never got to see his three months old baby.

The Defence Ministry is also providing for the families.

Unemployment rate rises to 3.1 per cent due to seasonal factors

After steadily dropping for five straight months, the unemployment rate rose slightly in July to 3.1 per cent. However, seasonal factors are behind the increase, including the entry of new high school graduates on the labour market.

According to the Labour Office, the number of unemployed is in fact at its lowest level since 1997 for the month of July.

The number of vacancies now stands at nearly 310,000 and only three regions have more jobseekers than openings: the Ústecký region in northwestern Bohemia and the Moravian-Silesian and South Moravian regions in the east of the country.

Studenka survivors mark ten years since tragic accident

Several dozen people gathered at Studenka ,the site of one of the worst rail accidents on Czech territory in 2008, to pay homage to the victims and express their dissatisfaction with the fact that no one has been held accountable for the tragedy.

Ten years ago today, a bridge undergoing reconstruction unexpectedly collapsed onto the tracks and minutes later an international express train ploughed into the debris. Eight people died in the accident and 95 were injured.

The courts have dealt with the case for nine years now and all those charged have so far been cleared because there was not sufficient proof they were responsible for the tragedy through negligence or otherwise.

River traffic on Labe renewed

Boat traffic was renewed on the Labe River on Wednesday afternoon following a clean-up operation to remove the debris of a footbridge near Nymburk which had to be pulled down for safety reasons.

The footbridge was deemed dangerous both to pedestrians and boats passing under it and had been closed to traffic since June.

The Labe is a busy waterway which connects the cities of Melnik, Nymburk and Kolin with Berlin and the Baltic Sea. There is no alternative waterway.

Tourist numbers up again in second quarter

The number of tourists in Czech hotels, hostels and camps rose to 5.5 million in the second quarter, a 4.6 percent increase year-on-year, the Czech Statistics Office reported.

The data indicate that the increase is also due to a higher number of Czechs holidaying at home. There has been a 7.9 percent increase in Czech holiday makers, the number of foreign visitors increased by 1.6 percent.

The biggest number of foreign tourists are from Germany, who make up a fifth of all foreign visitors, followed by tourists from Slovakia and China. Tourist figures have been rising for five years in succession now.

Weather forecast

Thursday should be clear to partly cloudy with day temperatures between 32 and 37 degrees Celsius.