This week Fox News reported that US federal authorities are investigating a second case of an air traffic controller sleeping on the job, after a similar incident at Washington’s Reagan Nation Airport caused an uproar (we wrote about it). The article said that the latest report of a snoozing air traffic controller came Wednesday during Capitol Hill testimony. This time the incident took place in, in Knoxville, Tennessee (IATA: TYS). In this case, the air traffic controller appeared to be “willfully” sleeping and the FAA said it is taking steps to fire the person.
Continue reading This week’s airport events: dangerous taxi ride & more sleep
It was April fools day on Friday and Virgin Atlantic released a funny press release for the occasion: they announced that fresh herbs and vegetables will be grown on board Virgin Atlantic flights for Upper Class passengers from April 1st 2011. They really built up a proper story by specifying that in Upper Class, fresh herbs will be used to complement drinks and cocktails from the bar area including thyme for Bloody Mary’s and fresh mint for Mojitos, Pimms and tea. The vegetable offering will complement the in-flight meal with availability of vegetable depending on your destination. Carrots, baby new potatoes and spinach will be available on flights returning to the UK. Miniature pumpkins and sweet potatoes will be grown on transatlantic flights to the USA, while Tokyo routes will have the choice of okura (okra) or shiitake mushrooms. Virgin Atlantic even supplied pictures of the “new service”, see one above.
Continue reading This week’s airport events: Herbs on planes and more
It’s been a massive week for Miami International Airport (IATA: MIA) after a fire broke out on Wednesday night and turning into an enormous blaze near six fuel tanks on the southeast side of the airport. It subsequently destroyed the airport’s hydrant fuel pump system forcing the cancellation of hundreds of flights. The Miami Herald wrote that “some semblance of normalcy could return by early next week after temporary pumps are installed and the backlog of canceled flights clears out.”
Continue reading This week’s airport events: sleep in Washington, fire in Miami
The media this week mainly focused on the developments of Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant. With that there were various reports about Tokyo’s International airport (IATA: NRT) becoming overwhelmed with people wanting to leave the country. Also we heard of several airlines (e.g. Lufthansa and Air China) stopping services to the country’s busiest hub altogether and of the opposite where airlines increased their capacities to fly their people out (e.g. Air India). But there even was “Japan nuclear” news from well outside Japan: On Thursday the Chicago Tribune reported that passengers on a flight from Tokyo had set off radiation detectors at O’Hare International Airport (IATA: ORD).
Continue reading This week’s airport events: Delays in Tokyo, the rise of Beijing and more
It’s been another week full of planes for me. But this week I’ve actually been on the planes. I’ve travelled through 3 airports including one that I’ve been longing to review for quite some time: Los Angeles International Airport (IATA: LAX). And I was lucky enough to meet up with the airport’s public relations person who gave me a fantastic tour through the airport and even showed me some real secrets of what to do when you have ample time at LAX. Watch this space for the detailed review!
The story of the week for me though was when we found out about Continue reading This week’s airport events: Lauper sings in Buenos Aires and more
This week for me has certainly been one surrounded by planes. However, it didn’t involve any flying. Puzzled? Alright, let me fill you in: I visited the 2011 Avalon International Airshow on 3 days. Where is Avalon? Glad you ask – Avalon (IATA: AVV) is a small regional airport about 60km South of Melbourne, Australia’s second largest city. Every other year Avalon hosts Australia’s largest International Airshow attracting Hundreds of Thousands of public and hundreds of industry & trade visitors from around the country and abroad. While I was hoping for a lot more civil aircraft demonstrations, the airshow otherwise lived up to the motto of “feel the power”: From a jet-engine-equipped glider, the always impressive Mustangs to the newest Royal Australian Air Force plane, the F/A-18F Super Hornet, if it had an engine and made a lot of noise, it was on display. My favourite bit though was the transport aircraft C27-J Spartan (pictured) flown by the Italian Air Force performing jaw-dropping manoeuvres and even included a roll!
Continue reading This week’s airport events: air show & bed bugs
This one was a rather eventful week for the world’s airports – at least by my news inbox measurements: We found out several interesting things, for example, that Los Angeles Airport (IATA: LAX) is the only airport with a hit song according to the airport’s media department. It’s a bit dated if you ask me, but hey, it’s a proper song! You can listen to it here. Maybe that was why I chose to fly through LAX on my next trip and therefore wrote up the first part of how to properly research an airport.
Continue reading This week’s airport events: lunchtime concerts, bed bugs and more
It’s the second week of our newly created section and I always knew this would happen at some point: there’s that odd week where not much happens. But don’t worry, this wouldn’t be LateDeparture if we hadn’t something to write about in style!
The first true late departure of the week was when a rat (yes, you read that right) delayed an Alaskan Airlines flight in Seattle (IATA: SEA). The Associated Press went on reporting that
[…]the flight from Seattle to Denver had just pulled away from the gate Thursday morning when the little stowaway was spotted. The 737 jetliner returned to the terminal and passengers and crew boarded another plane about 90 minutes later. Airline spokeswoman Bobbie Egan says the plane won’t be returned to service until maintenance workers make sure the rat didn’t damage equipment or chew any wires – and an exterminator certifies the plane is rodent-free.”
Well, if that wasn’t juicy news for you, I really don’t know!
Continue reading This week’s airport events: from rats to new greetings
Welcome to an entirely new section of LateDeparture! This little weekly review aims at giving you an overview of what happened in the world of airports over the past seven days; every week. Of course, in true LateDeparture fashion, I will specifically focus on airport developments and non-developments (read: delays). If, however, you’re after official on-time performance reports, you’re at the wrong spot. In that case you may want to try this site instead. Everyone else, please read on;-)
First of all, the harsh winter weather continued in many parts around the US and therefore added further delays across a number of US airports. Texas received a hit on Wednesday when more than 400 flights at Dallas-Ft. Worth International Airport (IATA: DFW) were cancelled as reported in the Wall Street Journal.
Continue reading This week’s airport events: the review