Climbers Caught Breaking Quarantine in France
Police in France are beginning to crack down on climbers who disobey official self-isolation and quarantine orders.
On March 28, Jausiers High Mountain Gendarmerie Platoon posted a photo to Facebook—as part of a public service announcement against climbing right now—of two people they saw climbing in the Verdon, disobeying France’s nationwide stay-at-home order. While it is unclear if the climbers in the photo were fined for their activity, 8a.nu reports that climbers in areas such as Céüse and Fontainebleau have received fines of €135 for continuing to climb. In France, it is illegal to leave one’s home except for essential work, doctors’ visits, daycare, going to the grocery store, or taking care of the elderly.
8a.nu goes to report that climbers have been spotted parking far away from climbing areas in hopes of avoiding attention and trouble, but the police in areas such as the Verdon are going to great lengths to catch offenders. The Jausiers High Mountain Gendarmerie Platoon, the officials in charge of enforcing quarantine rules in the Verdon area, spotted the aforementioned offending climbers while patrolling via helicopter, according to French newspaper Le Dauphiné Libéré.
Jausiers High Mountain Gendarmerie Platoon’s Facebook post explains, “This guy’s irresponsible behavior mobilize[s] our energy and can lead, if injuries were to occur, to deprive an infected person of a bed that could save him” [translated using Google Translate].
The country has slowly reopened after the strictest lockdowns during the pandemic and some types of climbing are no longer frowned upon. But not all the National Parks and the sites the National Park Service administers are open yet, for climbing or at all. Find out which ones are and which ones aren’t here.read more