News of Radio Prague

Bad vibes at Temelin as opponents argue over generating turbine

The dispute continues over safety at the Czech Republic's controversial Temelin nuclear power plant in South Bohemia, which was restarted for tests on Sunday following a three-month shutdown for repairs. Operators at the plant say the tests are going to plan, but anti-nuclear activists in Austria and the Czech Republic say technicians are again battling with heavy vibrations in the plant's generating turbine, the reason why Temelin was shut down for repairs. Temelin, completed last year at a cost of some 100 billion Czech crowns, has been plagued with technical problems since going into test operation last October. Opponents say its mixture of Soviet design and Western operating technology poses a risk to safety; Temelin's state-owned operators CEZ say the plant is safe.

New poll shows half of young people considering work in EU

A new poll released on Wednesday claimed that nearly half of young Czechs would accept a job in the European Union once their country becomes a member of the EU. The poll, conducted by the STEM polling agency in May, showed that 48 percent of Czechs aged 18 to 29 were considering moving to the European Union for at least six months to find work. Brussels has agreed to restrict the free movement of labour from new members for up to seven years after they join, following pressure from Germany and Austria, which fear a heavy influx of workers from neighbouring ex-Communist states. The Czech Republic, which has a population of 10.3 million, is expected to join the EU in 2004.

Czech shot putter banned for life after losing steroid appeal

The Czech shot putter Miroslav Menc has been banned for life from athletics after losing an appeal against a second positive drugs test in two years. A six-member commission said his body exceeded the accepted limit of the banned substance norandrosterone - a derivative of the anabolic steroid nandrolone - by 23 times. Menc has tested positive for drugs twice - once at a 1998 event in Athens and the second time last April at a Czech competition. The ban was based on the most recent case.

Man shoots himself after causing minor road accident

Police in the Plzen region say a 52-year-old man shot himself dead on Wednesday minutes after causing a minor traffic accident. A spokesman said the accident happened when the man was trying to overtake a tractor in his BMW car. The man had stopped his vehicle when a passing ambulance driver asked him if he needed medical assistance. The man declined the offer, got back in his car and shot himself in the head with a pistol.

Police, army meet to co-ordinate joint search for missing children

Police and army officers are meeting to co-ordinate a joint search for two children who went missing in the South Moravia region more than two weeks ago. Thursday will see the launch of a new search effort involving 200 police officers and 155 soldiers from the nearby Vyskov military academy, who will comb the surrounding area for clues. The search was intensified last week after police discovered the body of the children's Belgian brother-in-law near the village of Nebovidy in the Brno region. Police say the man, named as Stephan Knaepen, had committed suicide. The man's car was also found, but there was no trace of the two children, a boy aged 10 and a girl aged 12. The three left Brno on July 30th for a tour of local castles.

Weather forecast

And finally a quick look at the weather. Friday will be another hot and sunny day, with daytime temperatures reaching highs of 31 degrees Celsius. The sultry weather will also see the chance of showers, storms and hailstones later in the day. Temperatures at night will fall to lows of 15 degrees.