Major emergency operation at Pharmacy Museum after discovery of body
A major emergency operation was launched after a member of staff at the Pharmacy Museum was found dead at his workplace on Friday.
According to police investigations, the man had come into contact with a toxic substance before his body was discovered at 5.30pm. Police cordoned off the entrance to the museum, as well as nearby Stadthausgasse, Schneidergasse, and Totengässlein. Three members of staff were evacuated from the premises. None of them was injured.
For safety reasons, specialist fire fighters, the industrial fire fighters from the Basel region, and chemical specialists were deployed to investigate. They later declared that no dangerous chemical substance had been released into the environment.
As well as several police patrols, the Basel-Stadt ambulance service, and the institute for forensic medicine were involved in the operation.
The man’s death is not believed to be suspicious. No further details have been released about this incident due to considerations for his family.
Improved Rhine access for swimmers
The frequently used Rhine access point near the Tinguely museum does not quite match the refreshing experience of swimming. This will change next year.
Thanks to colder weather which arrived on Friday morning, many Rhine swimmershave had a day off. In the old days, the nuns of the Klingental monastery drew attention when swimming in the Rhine, later it was called stream-swimming and now it belongs to the long list of existingtraditions in Switzerland.
The scenery is stunning, the Rhine is beautifully cool compared to the hotstreets, and at the exit downriver, the popular buvettes are waiting. Simply wonderful! However, the first impression counts. And this doesn't earn compliments when it comes to swimming. The popularaccess point for swimmers near the Tinguely museum is made of hard gravel which hurts most people’s feet unless they wear swimming shoes. The access point is also hindered by large stones.
Baslers know how to balance and safely approach the Rhine between the stones. Many wear swimming shoes which are not elegant but practical and protect the feetfrom broken glass and the hard stones. Tourists who were attracted to swimming in the Rhine are less enthusiastic. «We expected another entry point forswimming», a father from Germany toldbarfi.ch. It's not all bad, since as soon he delves into the cool water the access isinstantly forgotten.
It will improve next year
The good news: This inhospitable reception will most probably belong to the past by next year. The Civil Engineering Office Basel-Stadt is planning a redesign. The large stones will be removed and the pebbly beach will be widened. «This will make it easier to enter the Rhine», Daniel Hofer, media spokesperson of the CivilEngineering Office, said. The start of the construction works is not yet clear but will most probably be in September.
And it is not only this access point which will shine with a new beach. The beach underneath the Schaffhauserrheinweg will be extended along its entire length. «Stones placed under the water have the effect that the heaped up gravel won't be washed away easily», Mr Hofer said. Along the shoreline, small bays and green islands will also be put in place.
Correction of fairway channel causes delay
The start of the project was planned for end of July but had to be postponedbecause the gravel needed for the extension of the beaches comes directlyfrom the Rhine. This will be provided by the Swiss Rhine Harbours who will take the gravel from correcting the fairway channel. The project is expected to cost around two million francs, with the Federal government giving a 35 per centcontribution to the total costs. Because of the initial correction works, the extension of the beaches will be delayed by at least two months to early September.
Swimmers will not just be looking forward to the next ideal day for swimming but also ahead to next year. Then for the first time: Access without obstacles.
Climate campaigners block oil harbour in Birsfelden
Climate campaigners formed a human chain to block the oil harbour in Birsfelden and were supported by a group of cyclists blocking the Auhafen.
Around 200 people arrived at the harbour at 7.15am on Friday morning and blocked the access and exit at Hafenstrasse near the junction of Rührbergstrasse. At the same time, the Auhafen in Muttenz was also successfully blocked at 6am by a group of cyclists. The blockage is planned to continue until this evening.
The campaigners are calling for an immediate end to he use of fossil energysources and a shift to a way of life based on renewable and solidary economic and societal systems. The campaign in Birsfelden is part of a worldwide protest for climate justice such as Ende Gelände, and Hambacher Forst in Germany, or Code Rood in the Netherlands.