In the mountains, in the woods or on terraces, Romanians fully enjoyed the free time and nice weather, partying the best they can: with traditional cakes and lamb roast, seasoned with lots of beer and mititei sizzling on hot grills.
Romanians had a week long May 1 – Easter holiday, many turning to Romanian and Bulgarian Black Sea resorts, mountains, parks and terraces in Bucharest as well as forests around the city. No matter where they chose to go, Romanians spend their May 1 getaway with barbecues, beer and party music. The ‘star’ of the day are still the Romanian mititei (grilled minced meat rolls – a/n), now in danger after the adoption of a European regulation (effective as of June 1 – a/n) banning the use of sodium bicarbonate, a preservative and an anti-oxidant in their meat composition. Even PM Victor Ponta defended the product, reassuring Romanians that the Government was ‘fighting’ to save the mititei (mici) from the European Commission. On May 1, the premier and his wife, MEP Daciana Sarbu, visited the Children’s City Park in District 4 in Bucharest, planted trees and took a ride on a little train driven by district Mayor Cristian Popescu Piedone. Ponta spent the second half of the day, as well as the Easter days at the Black Sea, in Neptun, in the same complex of villas as President Traian Basescu.
22 killed and 80 injured in 88 accidents
Those who chose to get out of Bucharest for the mini-vacation had to arm themselves with lots of patience, as DN1 Bucharest – Brasov, motorway no. 2 Bucharest-Constanta and the Vama Veche border crossing point were the busiest routes, affected by traffic jams and several kilometre-long lines of vehicles both ways.Despite the mobilisation of impressive traffic police forces (over 2,200 policemen and 420 speed cameras permanently monitoring a total of 394 national and European roads), there has been an alarmingly high number of accidents. The head of the Traffic Department in the Romanian Police (IGPR), Lucian Dinita, says in five days there have been 88 accidents where 22 people were killed and 80 injured. However, Dinita says the number of road accidents this year was lower by 92 compared to last year, and so was the number of victims (30 people died in 2012 compared to 22 this time). The high number of road accidents and victims was also noticed by PM Victor Ponta, who said he was worried by it and that the road code should be strengthened and the authority of law-enforces should be raised. ‘I am personally upset to see – and this seems unacceptable to me – the number of accidents and fatalities this week, one that was supposed to be a happy week,’ Ponta said yesterday. He said the change of road legislation by introducing harsher penalties and strengthening police authority was a Government priority. The Ministry of Interior (MAI) said, during the May 1- Easter mini-holiday, the Police had suspended a total of 1,564 driving licences, identified almost 530 offences and applied 14,300 fines, over 90 per cent of them being for speeding.
Fines and people prosecuted on May 1
The commissars of the National Environment Guard (GNM) who checked the organisation of picnics and barbecues on May 1 in Bucharest and Ilfov applied only two fines of RON 1,000 each, giving several warnings and informing the public on the Picnic Law banning such activities in areas other than those especially marked and set up for that purpose. On the other hand, Constanta Police prosecuted over 20 people for drug dealing and use during the May 1 holiday, when they discovered a few dozens grams of cannabis in the form of cigarettes, envelopes containing etnobotanic products as well as cocaine, during checks performed in Mamaia, Costinesti and Vama Veche.
Over 30,000 participate in Resurrection Mass in Bucharest
Over 30,000 people attended the Resurrection Mass in Bucharest Saturday night. Almost 7,000 going to take the light from the Patriarchy Hill from His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel, according to authorities’ estimations. Most people went to the church just to take light and did not stay for the whole mass that ended at about 3 am. In his address to the Orthodox believers, Patriarch Daniel said the Light of Resurrection also meant the ‘light’ in their behaviour. ‘Let us be close to those grieving and spread Light around us through our good deeds,’ said the Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church.