Quake Shakes Basel; Basel Bank Boxes Burgled; UniBas Searches For Life on Mars; Motion To Increase Cyclists Fines Rejected

News For 13 March 2018

Your Social Media feeds yesterday probably had your Basel region friends asking if anyone else felt an earthquake.  Turns out they're not crazy.  A 3.1 magnitude earthquake was recorded at 12:29AM by the Swiss Seismological Service as having its epicenter in Herrischreid, just over the border from Basel in Germany.  According to the Service, The Basel region is typically home to over 1,200 seismological events per year.


Thieves cleared out 22 compartments of an automated safety deposit box system at the Raiffeisen bank in Basel.

It is unclear how the thieves got access at the Aeschenplatz location, as there was no damage to the system. Customers do have access to the boxes 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but need a PIN to retrieve their valuables. This is the only bank in Basel to have a fully automated safety deposit box system.


A bank spokesman did not reveal whether or not a camera filmed the perpetrators for safety precautions, but added that “the insurance of the safe’s content is always the responsibility of the customer.”


David Bowie may have asked if there is life on Mars, but the University of Basel aims to answer the question.  A team of scientists headed by Nikolaus Kuhn from the UniBas is working in Witterswil on testing Swiss made cameras that will be mounted on a rover bound for the red planet starting in September 2020.  Six months later the rover should be touching down, and start taking samples of rock and soil.  The special cameras will then be able to directly observe any traces of life - if it has existed.


The National Council, Switzerland’s parliament, rejected a motion March 8 to increase fines for cyclists.

Federal councillors who were in favor of the increase cited 594 accidents were caused by Swiss cyclists in 2016. Those against the increase said a lack of cycling infrastructure is the bigger problem.

Currently, if you run a red light in a car it is a fine of CHF 250.-, whereas it’s only CHF 60.- on a bicycle. Other cycling fines are also comparatively low, such as riding with no hands on the handlebar is CHF 20.- and riding on the sidewalk is CHF 40.-.