Drizzling rain combined with freezing conditions and fog in places has complicated the situation on Czech roads. Affected have been parts of the Zlín area in Moravia, as well as southern Bohemia which registered icy patches on some routes, or the region of Karlovy Vary, where driving has been hampered by snowdrifts from Sunday. Elevated areas have seen more snow, turned to slush in places. Drivers are advised to exercise caution en route.
A 21-year-old motorist was killed in the early hours of Monday morning when his vehicle collided with another in Chodov in Prague. The accident took place shortly after 1 am at Litochlebské náměstí. The driver died on the spot; Prague police spokesman Tomáš Hulan said the cause of the accident was being investigated.
Police in Moravia are warning internet users about the ‘re-emergence’ of so-called “Nigerian letters” – scams aimed at defrauded unsuspecting victims of hundreds of thousands of crowns. Investigators on Monday revealed details of several incidents, including the case of a woman from Frýdek-Mýstek, in the east of the country, who was reportedly scammed out of 100,000 crowns – the equivalent of around 5,000 US dollars – by perpetrators abroad. In Nigerian letters, strangers from other countries contact users promising huge payoffs in return for investment, with money being routed through various channels. Police investigator Jiří Jícha stressed it was easy to see through such fraudulent emails, as they are often full of spelling mistakes and suspect language, but made clear some recipients chose to ignore the signs at their peril in the hope of making easy money.
A new survey conducted by Mediasearch for the Association of TV Organisations suggests that TV sets can be found of half of children’s bedrooms in the Czech Republic. The agency polled more than 700 youngsters between the ages of four and 14. The data reveals that, more and more, Czech kids have their own room, with boys’ rooms being especially well-equipped, often including a computer or gaming console. More than ninety-two percent of children between the ages of 4 and 14 have their own room, granting them a measure of privacy and their own space for personal activity. According to the survey, kids – on average – watch almost two hours of TV per day.
Fire fighters on Sunday fought to put out a blaze in the village of Prostřední Bečva in the Vsetín area that destroyed a barn near a family home and farm equipment with it. The fire began around 5 am with the owner being alerted by the barking of her dog; as a result she was able to save at least her car. The damage has been estimated at around 220,000 crowns; the flames took about 90 minutes to put out. A spokesman for the fire fighters said an investigation in cooperation with the police was underway to determine the cause of the fire.
Police have warned skiers and snowboarders vacationing in the Jeseníky Mountains to keep an eye on their ski equipment, targeted annually by thieves. According to police officers, thieves most often hit poorly guarded areas at local chalets. As a result officers will again patrol at ski areas this season, including restaurants and rest areas. Police spokeswoman Tereza Neubauerová said most often skiers who suffered theft either left equipment unattended in front of restaurants or locked in their cars. Basements in areas have also been hit.
Czech ski resorts registered only average interest by skiers over the Christmas holidays, in part due to mild weather and a lack of deeper snow: some smaller hills didn’t even open, the Czech news agency reported. Ski conditions, however, are expected to improve later in the week. The biggest ski resort in the Krkonoše Mountains, Špindlerův Mlýn, saw 4,000 visitors on Monday, while Černá Hora near Jánské lázně, also in northern Bohemia, had one thousand fewer.
Czechs and foreign nationals were able to visit traditional midnight masses on Christmas Eve at dozens of Catholic churches in the Czech capital. Some of the services were held in Italian, French and Vietnamese. Prague Archbishop Dominik Duka, primate of the Czech Catholic Church, celebrated midnight mass at St Vitus Cathedral at Prague Castle and Bishop Václav Malý, a former dissident, led the mass at St Wenceslas Church in the Smíchov district. In some churches, ‘midnight’ masses were in fact not held at 12 am but several hours earlier.
A total of 22 children were abandoned in ‘baby boxes’ in 2011 –
special monitored facilities that were first introduced in the country in
2005. The system serves to save newborns unwanted by their mothers.
Overall, since its implementation, 62 babies were left. A total of 47 of
the ‘boxes’ are in operation at medical facilities around the country.
Mothers leaving their newborn can do so anonymously, safely placing the baby in the heated and monitored compartment, which immediately alerts personnel. An overwhelming majority of Czechs (96 percent according to STEM) consider the system a valuable one that helps save children from ending up far worse. But earlier this year, baby boxes were criticized by the U.N. which charged that they violated the Convention of the Rights of the Child, and recommended they be abolished.
Firefighters responded numerous fires around the country on Saturday two
of which ended tragically. In one of the incidents, a 45-year-old man died
of asphyxiation, while in another, residents in an apartment building in
the east of the country, where a range hood caught fire, were luckier.
were able to put out the fire themselves even before rescue crews arrived.
But in a third incident a woman also died after of asphyxiation.
In all, firefighters were called to 53 incidents on Christmas Eve.