SHARE
COPY LINK
For members

TODAY IN SWITZERLAND

Today in Switzerland: A round-up of the latest news on Tuesday

Find out what's going on today in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the news.

Bahnhofstrasse (here in Zurich) is one of the most common street names in Switzerland. Photo by Tomek Baginski on Unsplash
Bahnhofstrasse (here in Zurich) is one of the most common street names in Switzerland. Photo by Tomek Baginski on Unsplash

Switzerland still trails its neighbours in Covid vaccination

According to data from the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH), 68.11 percent of Switzerland’s population is fully vaccinated as at January 23rd.

While the numbers are climbing – though slowly — the country still lags behind neighbour nations and is below the European Union average as well.

Switzerland has still not caught up with other nations’  immunisation rate. Image by Our World in Data

English language more common in Switzerland, new study shows

The distribution of the national languages has seen “moderate change” in the past four decades, according to a new study by the Federal Statistical Office (FSO)  

The proportion of German, Italian and Romansh spoken as people’s main language(s) have fallen, while those of French, along with non-national languages, especially English and Portuguese, have increased, primarily due to immigration.

This FSO chart shows what languages are spoken in Switzerland’s households.

READ MORE: How did Switzerland become a country with four languages?

Few children vaccinated against Covid

The rollout of vaccinations for children between the ages of five to 12 began in Switzerland on January 3rd, but has been slow to start, according to reports from cantons.

To date, 32,000 children — 5.2 percent of that age group — have received their shots, with the highest number in the Swiss-German part of the country.

Eight cantons exceeded the national average: Basel-City (12.8 percent), Basel-Country (11.8), Zurich (7.7), Aargau  (7.4), Berm (7.1), Zug (6.7) and Lucerne (6.4).

Although some parents are reluctant to inoculate their children against Covid because of concerns over side effects, “clinical trial results show that the vaccine is safe and effective in this age group”, health experts said.

READ MORE: Several Swiss cantons start children’s Covid vaccination

Cyberattack on Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) results in the leak of one million people’s data

As customers of several public transport companies could no longer renew their subscription online, the SBB restored access with the old mechanism in December 2021.

This decision inadvertently led to a loophole in security.

The leaked data contained information on tickets purchased and/or the validity period of subscriptions, SBB said. About half of the data was exclusively related to customers’ names and dates of birth.

However, “no information was leaked about the place of residence, means of payment, passwords and email addresses. The other half of the data contained impersonal information about tickets purchased from vending machines”.

The company added it was able to remedy this flaw and “unauthorised automated viewing of data is no longer possible”.

These are the most common street names in Switzerland

There are about 93,000 street names in Switzerland, and Watson news platform looked at which ones are the most common across the country. 

The result of their finding: Dorfstrasse – literally ‘village street’ is the most prevalent, found in 652 Swiss municipalities and communes.

It is followed by Hauptstrasse (553) (main street), and Bahnhofstrasse (524) (station street). 

The longest street name — Georg-Friedrich-Heilmann-Strasse —can be found Biel / Bienne .

The above may not fall under the ‘news you can use’ category, but it may be worth committing to memory anyway — this is just the kind of questions could be asked on the citizenship test.

READ MORE: Would you pass a Swiss citizenship test?

If you have any questions about life in Switzerland, ideas for articles or news tips for The Local, please get in touch with us at [email protected]

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members

TODAY IN SWITZERLAND

Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

From online scams to avoid to hot weather forecast: find out what's going on on Friday in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the news.

Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Campaign launched against online shopping scams

Swiss police are warning the public against online shopping scams, including  the latest one, involving the activation of an online payment system that allows scammers to make several online purchases at the expense of the victim.

The best way to protect yourself and not fall prey to scammers, police say is to:

  • Always verify the sender and amount when receiving a payment request;
  • Never transmit a confirmation code to third parties;
  • Always check account statements;
  • Immediately report any suspicious transactions;
  • Report any such crime to the police.

All the advice and recommendations can be found on this website.

READ MORE:  How to avoid the most common online scams in Switzerland

Free travel for Ukrainian refugees to end

Since March 21st, refugees from Ukraine have traveled free of charge in on public transportation in Switzerland, a service which was provided by the federal government.

This perk, however, will end from June 1st.

“This free travel saved us from considerable administrative work, as these people would have had to be issued transport cards for each stage of their registration procedure”, according to Anne Césard, spokesperson for the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM).

A number of MPs are challenging this decision, however.

 “If these people can no longer travel for free, this will constitute an additional obstacle to their chances of integration, knowing that the financial aid granted to them is very low”, said Pierre-Yves Maillard.

“As long as the majority of these people cannot meet their needs sufficiently, we must continue to help them by extending this free service, even if it is in the form of a subsidy”, said another deputy , Benjamin Roduit.

United States impressed by Swiss sanctions

The US government has praised what Switzerland has done so far in the search for Russian funds to block, according to Scott Miller, the American ambassador to Switzerland.

Bern has made “immense progress” in freezing about  6.3 billion francs, belonging primarily to Russian oligarchs with ties to president Putin.

“This is a package of sanctions of a weight and breadth that, to be honest, have never been seen in the world”, he added.

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: Why Switzerland is a magnet for Russian money
 

Get ready to be very hot today

If Swiss meteorologists got it right, temperatures will reach the high of 32 degrees today.

“The current heat wave is relatively extreme for a month of May”, said meteorologist Joshua Gehring from official weather service MeteoSwiss.

Screenshot MeteoSwiss

The reason: “What we are currently experiencing, that is to say a relatively early heat wave, is a direct consequence of climate change”, Gehring noted.

READ MORE: Heatwave: Why is it so hot in Switzerland right now?

If you have any questions about life in Switzerland, ideas for articles or news tips for The Local, please get in touch with us at [email protected]

SHOW COMMENTS