This week: a kangaroo, a snake and a sandwich causing troubles down-under

It’s been the first real weak after the festive season when most people got back to work resulting in more airport news. Interestingly three pieces received us from Australia this week – our home country. But we swear we had nothing to do with any of these little stories directly though!

First up, let’s reveal some further news about an old friend of ours: the new Berlin airport. Yes, we can hear you sigh. And a big sigh it was for us too when on Monday we read in the Wall Street Journal that the German capital’s new airport is delayed again – this time to 2014 or beyond. The newspaper wrote that the repeated postponement of the opening of the Berlin Brandenburg international airport (BER) has been a headache for travelers, as Berlin’s smaller airports Tegel (TXL) and Schönefeld (SFX) have become congested and flights are delayed or canceled. Reuters added further fuel into the fire when they reported that the European Commission is considering legal action against Germany over its new international airport in Berlin because of environmental concerns, marking a further setback for the project […].

From the United States we received two interesting bits of airport news this week. First up was the U.S. News reporting about a cleaning service worker at Florida’s Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) who found an iPad – with $13,000 stuffed in its case – and turned it in. He then gave away the small reward he got from the owner to two people in need. The whole thing happened in December but it was this Wednesday when the man was honored in a recognition ceremony. Well deserved, we say!

We love gossip and boulevard news, but we equally appreciate science. And we got a good feed for the latter when the MIT Technology News revealed an exciting study by two scientists describing how delays propagate across the US airport network. According to the article, the study found that most delays are reset each evening when flights stop for the night. But when the conditions are right, delays can propagate throughout the US network. If you’re interested in the full study, then you can find on the Cornell University Library website.

Now to Australia where two animals and one passenger provided us with three stories from across the large country. First up was Melbourne when the Herald Sun reported that a kangaroo on the hop at Melbourne Airport (MEL) was rescued by wildlife officers. It’s the second kangaroo to make its way into the airport carpark in the last couple of months. Check out the pictures on the newspaper’s site, they almost look staged, but we assure you they are real!

Not so cute was the incident with a snake on a Qantas plane this week. The Herald Sun reported on Friday that a passenger on a Qantas flight from Cairns (CNS) to Port Moresby (POM) looked out the window of their airborne aircraft and saw a 3m snake clinging to the wing. Needless to write that the snake that was identified as a amethystine python didn’t survive the journey. At least Qantas assured everyone by saying hitchhiking pythons were not an everyday occurrence. Phew.

And the final article from Down-under was published in the Daily Mail this week reporting that a flight was forced to turn back because of a furious argument between a passenger and the crew over the price of a sandwich. According to the article the Virgin flight had left Darwin (DRW), in northern Australia, for Perth (PER) when trouble began when the man began shouting at flight attendants. Two passengers told a news crew that the man eventually had to be handcuffed and taken to the back of the aircraft. The sandwich at fault is believed to be a gourmet chicken and salad sandwich, created with celebrity chef Luke Mangan, costing A$10.

That’s all for this week – save travels!

[Photo from Flickr – Some rights reserved by Flying Cloud]