Paris (CNN)A protester was accidentally run over and killed by a car during a demonstration over rising fuel prices, a top official in eastern France said Saturday.
Protests over spiraling French fuel prices leave 1 dead, dozens injured
Mass demonstrations causing roadblocks across the country are part of the "gilets jaunes" or "yellow vests" movement, which opposes mounting gas prices and eco-taxes on polluting forms of transport.
The death occurred when a driver "panicked" and ran over someone after arriving at a blockade for an undeclared protest not far from the city of Lyon, Louis Laugier, the prefect of the Savoie region, said at a news conference.
A further 227 people were injured -- six severely -- in protests across the country, and 73 people were taken into police custody, the Interior Ministry said in a statement. Five police officers suffered slight injuries, and one was severely injured. Another five gendarmes were hurt as well.
Speaking about the death, French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said: "That's the reason why we were worried to have people (who are) not experienced organizing protests."
Ecology Minister François de Rugy called on citizens to "respect caution and safety recommendations" in order for protests to go ahead "without a new tragedy," in a tweet Saturday. He also offered his condolences to the family of the victim.
More than 1 million people were expected to turn out Saturday for demonstrations across the country. Partway through the day, the numbers were much lower than that.
About 280,000 people participated in more than 2,000 demonstrations, the Interior Ministry said.
"Honestly we're satisfied, even if it's true we are not hundreds of thousands people here, but still, people have come. The day is not over yet, and we're glad that there are no incidents here," Thierry Paul Valette, who helped organize a protest on the Champs El