Local Daily News 21st September

The acting medical director of the Torrevieja health department resigns

Juan Carlos Toral, acting medical director of the University Hospital of Torrevieja has submitted his resignation from the position that will be effective from October 1st, as confirmed by sources from the health department. Dr. Toral has been the right hand of the managing director Pilar Santos since the Generalitat assumed direct management of the health area almost a year ago now.

The Oncology specialist will focus on the direction of this medical service that he has never stopped exercising, at a time when new residents are to be incorporated and when the health centre is making an effort to streamline the care of cancer patients. Toral is well versed in the functioning of the hospital and the entire department because he joined the department at the beginning of its career in 2007.

He is one of the few directors who has remained in his duties for a long period of time under Ribera’s management and that the Ministry of Health managed to retain with the change with the new direct management. His decision coincides with the landing since July of Isabel González, former manager of the Sant Joan and Alzira hospitals, and therefore with experience in a reversal process such as the one that is taking place in Torrevieja, as an advisor to the new Minister Miguel Minguez.

The thermometers of the Vega Baja finally drop below 20 degrees after 84 tropical nights

The thermometers have dropped below 20 degrees for the first time in much of the interior of the Vega Baja region after 84 consecutive days of tropical nights – above that temperature, as indicated by Pedro José Gómez Cascales, Author of the MeteOrihuela Project Geographer and Meteorologist. MeteOrihuela explains that “it is well known since the summer of 2022 has been the warmest in Europe and in Spain since there are official records.” In the old continent there are data series that allow us to go back to 1880, “this year resulting in an anomaly of +1.3ºC with respect to the average”. In Spain, according to the same source, “taking the authorised database since 1961 as a reference, the anomaly has been +2.2ºC, which is 0.4ºC more than the warmest summer to date, which was in 2003”.

On the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, “the loss of climatic comfort in recent decades is very clear.” It is especially noticeable at night, with a huge number of tropical nights (temperature does not drop below 20ºC) and increasingly hot or equatorial nights (temperature does not drop below 25ºC). And the extension of the warm season of the year has been prolonged towards spring and autumn. There is already talk of “five-month summers”, with May, June, July, August and September being the period where the summer atmosphere takes hold, with a surface temperature of the sea water at almost 30ºC, the “refreshing effect” of the sea ​​breezes is clearly diminished.

Thus, “it is news -says Pedro José Gómez- that the thermometers finally drop below 20ºC in most of the Vega Baja del Segura region, after 84 consecutive days without doing so. Specifically, since last June 27th This trend of a cooler environment at dawn will continue for the next few days.

Autumn is knocking at the door. The atmosphere is more dynamic, the probability of rain is increasing and becoming more common, temperatures are gradually lowering, and of course the length of the days is less, rising later each day and setting earlier.

Review of the minimum temperatures recorded today, Tuesday, September 20, 2022, in different meteorological observatories: Albatera 19.4ºC; Algorfa 19.1ºC; Almoradí 19.0ºC; Benejuzar 18.4ºC; Bigastro 18.6ºC; Segura callose 18.7ºC; Catral 18.9°C; Cox 19.4°C; Dolores 18.9ºC; Guardamar del Segura 19.4ºC; Jackfruit 19.1ºC; Orihuela 18.2ºC; Rafal 18.9ºC; Redovan 18.8ºC; Rojales 19.1ºC; San Fulgencio 18.6ºC; San Miguel de Salinas 19.5ºC. There are two exceptions, in the coastal towns of Pilar de la Horadada and Torrevieja they have not yet dropped (nearly) below 20ºC.

The City Council of Torrevieja increases the budget up to 17.7 million to buy 32 buses for the new urban transport

The contracting table has validated the documentation of Solaris Bus Ibérica’s offer to provide the Torrevieja City Council with the bus fleet for a new municipal transport service at a cost to the municipal coffers of 17.7 million euros.

It is the only company that has submitted an escrow. And also the only one that registered a proposal for this multimillion-dollar contract in the previous call that was abandoned at the beginning of August. The difference between the previous contract and the one that is intended to be closed now is that the tender price has increased by 1.3 million euros, 10%, and it has been justified “in the current market situation, the incessant escalation of prices of energy and raw materials, the consequences derived from the political conflict (sic) between Russia and Ukraine and the still not overcome pandemic, ”according to the statement. Despite the complexity required to modify a specification and its economic conditions, only a few days passed in August between the closing of the call that was deserted and the start of the current one.

Solaris Bus Ibérica was ruled out in the first attempt because its offer did not guarantee compliance with the different warranty periods for vehicles of up to 10 years -in the case of bus structures-. It remains to be seen if the registered offer now contemplates them.

The objective of this contract is the purchase of the bus vehicles that will be used to carry out the urban transport service of Torrevieja. 32 units. 28 hybrid and 4 electric. The supply period is 18 months. Outside the current municipal mandate. As property of the City Council, the buses will be transferred to the commercial concessionaire awarded the service – a service that will be tendered for another nine million euros per year. The purchase includes the digitization of the service with ticketing, validation of rates, video surveillance and information to the citizen.

The ordinary plenary session of this month of September on the 29th, plans to discuss the management model: direct by the local administration or indirect, to be awarded to a company. The procedure to buy the bus fleet already assumes that it will be indirect, which is the bet of the PP government team. The popular had to paralyse the processing before a report from the technicians who warned them that without deciding on the management model, some of the administrative aspects of the contract could not be deployed. They paralyzed some of the procedures but not the purchase of buses. Solaris is a very common provider of transport companies, including the one that it has been carrying out without a contract for more than 9 years in Torrevieja, Avanza. The multinational works with the City Council with a tacit extension of the agreement that the City Council signed with the commercial company Autocares Costa Azul – later acquired by Avanza, because the municipality for decades avoided claiming the competence of urban traffic in order not to municipalize it or put it out to tender.

The launch of the new urban transport service is one of the star promises of the current mandate of the ruling team of the Popular Party. The work was only started when he was able to award the new waste collection and urban cleaning service, which took more than three years to process. The current service is very deficient in frequencies, lines and schedules. Free for registered residents. Something that will suppress the new service.

Footwear saves exports amid the sluggishness of the rest of the sectors

It has been one of the sectors that has had the worst time with the pandemic, but, once recovered, it is the one that is pulling the hardest to sustain the province’s exports. This is how things are going for footwear, which, with the 128 million euros reached in July, has returned Alicante’s foreign sales to the path of growth after the setback experienced the previous month. And all this, moreover, in a very complicated situation at the international level that is indeed affecting the rest of the traditional sectors, which are immersed in sluggishness.

According to data published by the Ministry of Industry, Labour and Tourism, the province’s exports have regained momentum when everything seemed to indicate that it had entered a phase of regression due to factors such as inflation and the uncertainty in the markets internationally as a result of the war in Ukraine. The alarm had been raised in June, when the uninterrupted streak of growth that began in January was broken with a drop of 8%, which left the number of sales abroad at 596 million.

The 628 million euros exported in July not only serve to return to the positive path, but also represent the best figure since the beginning of the year, only surpassed by the 649 million achieved in the month of May. And the most curious thing about the case is that it is footwear that has pulled the most from this resurrection, with 128 million euros compared to just 89 the previous month. An industry that had had a very hard time with the restrictions derived from the pandemic, which brought with it the suppression of social events of all kinds and, with it, a precipitous drop in consumption related to fashion. After waiting for 2022 to recover the export figures prior to the health crisis, it has been one of the few sectors that have registered a positive progression in July.

The rest do seem to be beginning to notice the complicated economic context that exists today. In the agri-food sector, only fruit and nuts, which went from 49 million in June to 53, experienced a slight increase. Legumes and vegetables fell, going from 28 to 22 million, and so did canned vegetables, in this case from 27 to 25 million.

The same happens with other powerful sectors in Alicante, such as plastic materials and their manufacturers, which drop from 42 to 40 million, and aluminium and its components, from 39 to 38. Games and toys, yes, register a increase by going from 11 to 15 million euros, although in this industry it will not be until the final stretch of the year when the true situation of exports is known, since it is at that time, coinciding with the Christmas campaign, when it is played all in one letter.

All in all, exports from the province continue with scales higher than those registered in 2019. Thus, it has gone from the 3,226 million euros exported in the first seven months of that year to the 4,195 million obtained in the same period of the current year .

The president of the Confederation of Employers of the Valencian Community (CEV), Salvador Navarro, indicates that, “despite the fact that the situation is complicated due to the high energy costs derived from absolute speculation in the gas market, the companies are doing their homework well, focused on working their products and buyers, waiting for the policy to solve the problem of inflation”. Navarro acknowledges that there is concern about what may happen in the immediate future, although he is also convinced that “the crisis will not last forever.”

For his part, Carlos Baño, president of the Alicante Chamber of Commerce, does not hesitate to point out that the increase in exports “represents joy and hope”, although he also warns that, in the current context of uncertainty , “we are going to attend a real roller coaster of ups and downs”. Medicine, in his opinion, goes through “work and perseverance”, and also through the search for solutions to high energy prices.

Four boys between the ages of 11 and 13 have been identified as perpetrators of the homophobic assault on a minor in San Vicente

The homophobic aggression suffered by a minor from San Vicente a couple of weeks ago when she was in a friend’s urbanization was the work of four boys whose ages range between 11 and 13 years old, according to the investigation carried out by the Civil Guard that has already been sent to the Alicante Juvenile Prosecutor’s Office.

Although more boys would have participated in the events, the ages of the four to whom the authorship of the attack is attributed, all under 14 years of age, makes them unimpeachable. In other words, no criminal action can be taken against them, not even a restraining order for the victim, a fifteen-year-old girl whose nose was broken and more injuries were caused to her face after throwing homophobic insults at her.

For those under 14 only actions of a social nature are contemplated. For this reason, the Prosecutor’s Office is going to report this file to the territorial direction of Social Welfare, the competent body to implement monitoring and intervention plans in the case of these four boys and their families. Something that has been done in cases of sexual crimes and gender violence, where this aggression can be included.

Before the events were formally reported to the Civil Guard, it was the victim herself who recounted what had happened to her on her Instagram profile. She presented herself as a 15-year-old girl and she said that she was calmly with her friends when a group of boys began to call her “faggot”, “transsexual” and “transformer”. Comments that she, as she explained, affected her because she had been suffering from them for almost the entire Secondary School stage, but in the face of which she decided “not to get involved” thinking that they would leave her alone that way.

But that was not what happened. As the boys continued to harass her, they chose to go to the housing estate of one of her friends. A private and fenced enclosure with a fence that does not prevent seeing what is on the other side, so they located them.

The girl said that one of those ten children jumped the fence and opened it to the rest. From that moment on, the insults were joined by trying to keep the scooter of another of the girls, “which we were not going to let them do.”

The attack escalated and the victim detailed how, “when he had never said or done anything to them”, one of the boys gave him “a slap” and then “five children begin to hit me with punches in the mouth and on the face. One of them broke his nose.

Her mother recounts that they learned of the insults that her daughter has been receiving for two years last year, that she reported it to the centre and that on that occasion the boys asked her for forgiveness. Both in his school and in his institute they have condemned the aggression and have supported the victim with marches.

 A brave girl, in the words of her mother, who now has to be taken to the school “while nothing has happened to her aggressors and she is unprotected”, laments this woman.

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