Car hits pedestrians in Germany: two killed, 15 injured

A car has driven at high speed into a pedestrian zone in the southwestern German city of Trier, killing at least two people and seriously injuring 15 others before being stopped by police.

The driver, identified as a 51-year-old German man from the area, was arrested at the scene and the vehicle was impounded, Trier police spokesman Karl-Peter Jochem said, according to news agency dpa.

Footage from the scene showed people outside a shop apparently helping someone on the ground lying among scattered debris.

A square is blocked by the police in Trier, Germany, December 1, 2020. German police say two people have been killed and several others injured in the southwestern German city of Trier when a car drove into a pedestrian zone. Trier police tweeted that the driver had been arrested and the vehicle impounded. (AP)

“It was simply terrible,” Mayor Wolfram Leibe told n-tv television after visiting the site.

Mr Leibe said the perpetrator “drove through the pedestrian zone, clearly at high speed, and killed several people and injured several, some of them seriously”.

The driver is being questioned by police, he said.

“I don’t want to speculate, but all of us are asking ourselves … what drives a person to do something like this?” Mr Leibe said.

“Of course I don’t have an answer to this question.”

Police and rescue crews were on the scene and authorities told people to avoid the city centre.

Trier, Germany
A square is blocked by the police in Trier, Germany, December 1, 2020. (AP)

The area was being kept shut down until at least Wednesday morning local time (Wednesday night AEDT) for police to collect evidence, but there was no longer any danger, Mr Leibe said.

“There are shocking and harrowing images that reach us after the alleged rampage from Trier. Our thoughts now are with the injured and the families of the dead,” the official Twitter account for Prime Minister Malu Dreyer’s Social Democratic Party posted.

Ms Dreyer is on her way to the scene and expected to speak shortly.

In a video posted by a local media outlet purportedly showing the arrest, police could be seen pinning a man down on the sidewalk next to a car with Trier licence plates. The authenticity of the video could not immediately be verified and it was taken down shortly after police tweeted a request that people do not share photos and videos of the scene.

Steffen Seibert, a government spokesperson and press office chief, called the incident “staggering”.

“Our thoughts are with the relatives of the victims, with the numerous injured and with everyone who is currently on duty to care for those affected,” he wrote on Twitter.

Trier, Germany
A car was driven into a pedestrian zone in the town of Trier, Germany, police said. (CNN)

Trier is about 200km west of Frankfurt, near the border with Luxembourg. The city of about 110,000 people is known for its Roman gate, the Porta Nigra, which is near the scene of the crash, and as the birthplace of Karl Marx.

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Two killed by car in pedestrian zone in German town, driver arrested

At least two people were killed and 15 others injured on Tuesday when they were hit by a car in the Western German city of Trier, police said.

A 51 year old man from the Trier area was arrested, police announced on Twitter. They are currently questioning the suspect.

Police and rescue crews are on the scene and authorities have told people to avoid the city center.

“We have arrested one person, one vehicle has been secured. Two people have died, according to preliminary indications. Please continue to avoid the downtown area,” police said on Twitter.

Mayor Wolfram Leibe told the SWR broadcaster that in addition to the two dead, 15 people had suffered serious injuries.

“We have an amok driver in the city. We have two dead that we are certain of and up to 15 injured, some of them with the most severe injuries,” he told SWR.

“We are just trying to get an overview. We have ambulances from all over the region helping here. Our first task now is to make people safe.”

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India GDP: What car sales reveal about India’s stalling economy

On the back of such buying by customers like Mr Arya, the Indian automobiles sector, which contributes 7% to the country’s Gross Domestic Product or GDP, recorded a good month in October. It’s a small sign of hope for the Indian economy, which has now

recorded two successive quarters of negative growth.

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Carlos Sainz Sr to drive in Extreme E, Formula E’s Mahindra commit to new car

Sainz Sr and Sanz will compete for the Spanish-entered Acciona team

Spanish two-time rally champion Carlos Sainz Sr will drive in the inaugural Extreme E series in 2021.

The father of McLaren F1 driver Carlos Sainz will drive for Acciona – one of nine teams competing.

In Formula E the Mahindra team have signed up for the sport’s third generation of car for 2022 as teams meet for testing before the season.

Extreme E will be streamed live across BBC platforms, including iPlayer and the BBC Sport website.

Alongside his world rally titles in the early 1990s, Sainz, 58, has also won the Dakar Rally three times – a close comparison to what drivers will experience in Extreme E.

The series aims to raise awareness in areas around the world affected by climate change and visit territories – Arctic, desert, rainforest, glacier and coastal – which have been affected, such as Greenland and Brazil’s Amazon region.

Newly crowned seven-time Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton recently announced he will enter a team into the sport, as has his old Mercedes team-mate and title rival Nico Rosberg.

Each team will field one male and one female driver to promote equality in motorsport.

Acciona’s female driver is Dakar trial biker Laia Sanz, 34, also from Spain.

“To compete in a championship where there is gender equality, where both drivers are equally important and where both are going to win and lose together seems very original and inclusive,” said Sainz.

“For a veteran like me, this is one of the last things I am yet to try out – I would have left behind some unexplored territory!”

Mahindra – here testing the Gen2 car in Valencia – have won four E-prix

Meanwhile, Formula E teams are testing their cars in Valencia, Spain, before the delayed 2020-2021 season, where founding team Mahindra have committed to the third generation car for 2022-2023.

The Indian team, whose owners aim to put half a million electric vehicles on Indian roads by 2025, will start to develop the Gen3 car, which promises greater power and battery efficiency.

The current field uses the Gen2 car, in which DS Techeetah’s Antonio Felix da Costa won last season’s title.

Formula E announced last week it would introduce its first night race in Saudi Arabia on 26 and 27 February.

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WA planning one of world’s longest continuous electric car networks under climate policy

Western Australia plans to build one of the longest continuous electric vehicle networks in the world and has committed $100 million to a previously-mooted battery to stabilise the power network.

They are part of a suite of measures worth $300 million the WA Government has announced as part of its climate policy, with the “aspirational” aim of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

But the Conservation Council of WA said the policy failed the key test on cutting pollution, because it did not set legislated targets to reduce greenhouse gasses.

To encourage people to buy electric cars, the Government will spend $21 million building Australia’s longest electric vehicle fast-charging network.

“You’ll be able to drive from Esperance to Perth, out to Kalgoorlie if you want, or north to Kununurra,” Innovation and ICT Minister Dave Kelly said.

There are currently 1,500 electric vehicles in WA, equating to 1 per cent of all vehicles in the state.

“It is estimated that the cost of electric vehicles will actually meet the costs of conventional vehicles sometime in the next five to 10 years, so it’s actually very soon,” Mr Kelly said.

“But you’ve got to make sure the infrastructure is ready.”

The State Government has also committed to buying 25 per cent electric vehicles for the state fleet when possible, a move that will involve installing EV charging stations in government buildings.

Mega-battery to ‘stabilise’ grid

The Government has committed more than $100 million to a 100 megawatt battery in Kwinana, with the battery set to equal the size of 22 tennis courts.

It will be designed to store excess solar energy and stabilise the power network.

“It will ensure that for up to two hours up to 160,000 households can be powered if needed,” Environment Minister Stephen Dawson said.

Environment Minister Stephen Dawson says the battery will help support the power network.(ABC News: Hugh Sando)

A contract to build the battery is due to be awarded by May 2021, and the Government estimates the battery could be built and working by September 2022.

The climate strategy also includes $15 million for carbon farming to store carbon in the environment, and a total of $28 million towards a hydrogen fund and hydrogen projects.

Premier Mark McGowan said because hydrogen could be produced using sea water and solar energy, it could provide an endless source of renewable base load power, which countries like Japan and South Korea were very interested in.

Premier Mark McGowan plugs in an electric vehicle at a charging station with several people in the background.
Mr McGowan tried his hand at plugging in an electric vehicle as he unveiled the policy.(ABC News: Hugh Sando)

“This will mean Western Australia can continue this development pathway to create potentially one of biggest industries in the world in coming years and make sure that we have base load power that is produced in a renewable way and is reliable at all times of the day and night,” he said.

Mr Dawson said he was confident WA did not need to legislate for net zero emissions because the Government was working well with industry, adding companies such as FMG and Woodside were already on board.

“They are on the same trajectory,” Mr Dawson said.

Critics say Paris Agreement ‘undermined’

The Conservation Council dismissed those claims by Mr Dawson, saying there was no plan to cut growing emissions from WA’s biggest polluters in the gas industry.

“WA is the only state in Australia with rising carbon pollution and this policy offers no concrete plan or targets to get this pollution under control,” the council’s director Piers Verstegen said.

“This undermines efforts under the Paris Agreement and could put the nail in the coffin even for Australia’s modest national emissions reduction targets.”

A bearded man sits on a wooden bench with a backdrop of lush vegetation.
Piers Verstegen says Labor’s policies fail a key test.(ABC News: Elicia Kennedy)

The Conservation Council welcomed the electric vehicle and hydrogen announcements but said they were very modest compared to other states.

It noted the New South Wales Government had announced a $32 billion plan for renewable energy and batteries.

“The policy released today must be built upon with much more work and detail before it can be considered a credible approach to this issue form our State Government,” Mr Verstegen said.

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ETFs for the Driverless Car Revolution

Investors seeking exposure to the driverless car revolution now have the option of buying into exchange-traded funds (ETFs) specifically dedicated to driverless cars, electric vehicles, and other innovations in the automobile industry.

Among this class of ETFs are KraneShares Electric Vehicles and Future Mobility ETF (KARS), which debuted in January of 2018; InnovationShares NextGen Vehicle and Technology ETF (EKAR); which debuted in February 2018, and Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF (DRIV), which debuted in April 2018. Prior to the introduction of these specific ETFs, there were no ETFs directly related to self-driving cars and electric vehicles, and only one ETF was focused on the automobile industry.

Key Takeaways

  • Investors seeking exposure to the driverless car revolution now have the option of buying into exchange-traded funds (ETFs) specifically dedicated to driverless cars, electric vehicles, and other innovations in the automobile industry.
  • KraneShares Electric Vehicles and Future Mobility ETF, InnovationShares NextGen Vehicle and Technology ETF, and Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF are ETFs that are invested in driverless cars, electric vehicles, and other innovations in the automobile industry.
  • People looking to invest in driverless cars also have the option of adding ETFs to their portfolio that are focused on the automobile industry and related technological innovations, including First Trust’s Global Auto Index Fund or Industrial Innovation ETF by ARK Invest.

KraneShares Electric Vehicles and Future Mobility ETF

The KraneShares Electric Vehicles and Future Mobility ETF had $57.74 million in net assets as of November 27, 2020. The fund tracks the performance of Solactive Electric Vehicles and Future Mobility Index, which includes global companies involved with new transportation methods. These companies focus on electric vehicles or their components, technologies related to autonomous driving, shared mobility, lithium and copper production, hydrogen fuel cell manufacturing, and other innovations in the sector.

Ideanomics NextGen Vehicle and Technology ETF

The Ideanomics NextGen Vehicle and Technology ETF is made up of global stocks related to electric autonomous, or self-driving, vehicles. The fund invests in companies that fall into four categories within the sector: battery producers, original equipment manufacturers, suppliers, and producers of semiconductors and software. The ETF had $4.22 million in net assets as of November 2020.

Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF

The Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF seeks to correspond to the Solactive Autonomous and Electric Vehicles Index. The fund invests in companies that are involved in the development and manufacturing of software and hardware for driverless vehicles, and companies that produce electric vehicles and their components, such as lithium and cobalt. As of November 2020, the fund had $124.9 million in net assets.

Related Exchange Traded Funds Options

People looking to invest in driverless cars also have the option of adding ETFs to their portfolio that are focused on the automobile industry and related technological innovations.

First Trust’s Global Auto Index Fund (CARZ) was launched in 2011, and until 2018, it was the only ETF related to the automobile industry. As of July 2020, the fund had $44.35 million in net assets. The ETF tracks the NASDAQ OMX Global Auto Index, which includes nearly all of the major automobile manufacturers worldwide. Holdings include Honda Motor Company (HMC), General Motors (GM), Toyota Motor Corporation (TM), and Tesla Inc. (TSLA).

Another more broad investment option related to driverless cars is the Industrial Innovation ETF by ARK Invest (ARKQ), which launched in 2014 and had reached $633 million in net assets as of November 2020. This is an actively managed fund that invests in companies identified as being likely to benefit from technological advancements—including those related to electric and autonomous vehicles. Software and IT services companies, semiconductor firms, and automobile companies combine to account for about 80% of the portfolio assets.

ETF investors may also wish to consider a fund like the First Trust Clean Edge Green Energy Index Fund (QCLN). Launched by First Trust in 2007, the ETF focuses on companies involved in providing clean alternative energy. While there’s no direct connection to driverless cars, there is some significant overlap between companies involved in developing driverless cars and those involved in clean energy. This fund, which tracks the NASDAQ Clean Edge Green Energy Index composed of U.S.-listed firms engaged in developing clean energy, had $1.5 billion in net assets as of November 2020. Semiconductor firms, which are likely to be essential in creating driverless car technology, account for about a third of the portfolio holdings.

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Romain Grosjean survives horror crash after Formula One car bursts into flames

Manama: Romain Grosjean suffered minor burns and suspected broken ribs, but was in a stable condition after his car smashed through safety barriers at the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix on the opening lap, bringing the race to a halt.

The Frenchman’s Haas car was ripped in half and engulfed in flames as it speared through protective barriers immediately after the start, following contact with the AlphaTauri of Daniil Kvyat.

Romain Grosjean’s car bursts into flames after a crash during the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday.Credit:Getty Images

The impact was measured at over 50G, according to a spokesman for the sport’s governing FIA.

“(Romain) is stable and being taken by helicopter to the MDF MC Military Hospital for further evaluation,” the governing body said.

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Two people charged with manslaughter after Townsville toddler found dead in car

Police have charged two people with manslaughter after a three-year-old girl was found dead in a car in Townsville earlier today.

Police were notified around 3.30pm after a 37-year-old Burdell woman and 29-year-old Burdell man took the girl to Townsville University Hospital.

A crime scene was established and preliminary investigations indicate the toddler was left inside a locked vehicle for most of the day.

Police have charged two people with manslaughter after a three-year-old girl was found dead in a car in Townsville earlier today (Nine)

A nurse from the hospital was the first to raise the alarm.

A police statement said police and detectives from the Child Protection and Investigation Unit were called to the scene “in relation to a child”.

9News understands that police believe the child may have been in the car since school drop-off in the morning, and was only discovered when it came to pick-up time.

Temperatures in Townsville reached well above 30C today.

The 37-year-old woman and 29-year-old man were subsequently charged and are due to appear before the Townsville Magistrates Court tomorrow.

The investigation remains ongoing.

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