It’s been a varied week in the world of airports this week as you’ll see from our recap of the top stories:
- Hoax bomb threat in Manchester
- Singapore’s Project Jewel
- 78 year old caught smuggling cash
- India’s giant billboards blocking growth
The biggest scare this week probably came from Northern England when the BBC reported earlier in the week that a man has been arrested on suspicion of making a hoax bomb threat after RAF jets were alerted to escort a passenger plane to Manchester Airport (MAN). The plane involved was an Airbus A330 with 269 passengers and 13 Qatar Airways crew on board. Passengers were able to disembark “as normal” according to the report however all flights in and out of the airport were suspended for about 25 minutes.
If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you probably know we’re a big fan of Singapore’s Changi Airport (SIN). So any news about enhancing the airport even further is greeted here with three cheerios. This week, The Business Insider reported of Changi’s project Jewel which will connect the all three of Changi’s terminals via all-glass walkways, and will include green walls to offset the emissions from the planes overhead. Designed by the architect of Singapore’s iconic Marina Bay Sands hotel complex, Moshe Safdie, Project Jewel will be built of glass and steel and shaped like a doughnut. It will be approximately 1.4 million square feet with five stories and is expected to be completed in 2018.
Then we heard from Boston.com that this week a 78-year-old Florida woman tried to fly on an international trip from Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW) with almost $41,000 in cash hidden inside her girdle, bra and carry-on bag. A complaint filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Detroit said the woman was trying to board a flight April 2 to the Philippines with her daughter. She initially said she had $200 in cash but submitted a form declaring she had $1,200, prompting questions. She then told them she had $3,000 in her blouse and $2,000 sewn into the strap of her bra. Officers continued to search and said they found about $21,000 in her girdle. Busted we say.
And for our final news of the week we bring you an astonishing story from India: Bloomberg reported that Mumbai’s towering billboards, which hawk everything from the latest Bollywood movies to soda, block out more than some sunlight. They’re also a physical hurdle preventing Air India from reaching its potential on what should be one of its most lucrative routes. According to the report the height of billboards near India’s financial hub means the Boeing 777-300ER jets the carrier uses for non-stop flights to Newark (EWR), New Jersey, near New York City must fly 51 fewer passengers, or 15 percent below capacity, in order to clear them. That’s costing 100 million rupees ($1.6 million) a month in lost revenue, India’s junior aviation minister told parliament this week. United, the only other carrier to fly nonstop between Mumbai and Newark, uses the smaller 777-200. The billboards don’t affect United’s operations or capacity, a spokeswoman for the Chicago-based carrier, said in an e-mail.
That’s all for this week – safe travels.
[Title photo from Singapore Changi Airport – some rights reserved]