Transportation

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Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Volvo’s entire car lineup will be fully electric by 2030
Volvo XC40 Recharge P8 AWD in Glacier Silver
Volvo XC40 Recharge P8 AWD in Glacier Silver Credit: Volvo

On Tuesday, the Swedish company Volvo said joining a growing number of carmakers planning to phase out fossil-fuel engines by the end of this decade.

The transition to selling only electric cars will allow Volvo "to meet the expectations of our customers and be a part of the solution when it comes to fighting climate change," he added. Europe has imposed aggressive targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles, and carmakers face huge potential fines if they do not comply.

The carmaker said 50% of its global sales should be fully-electric cars by 2025 and the other half hybrid models.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Air New Zealand to trial digital Covid vaccination passport on Auckland-Sydney flights
Air New Zealand plane
Air New Zealand plane Credit: Air New Zealand (Twitter Reproduction)

Travel pass – a Covid-19 vaccination passport app developed by the International Air Transport Association – will be tested on Air New Zealand flights between Auckland and Sydney from April on “to streamline the health verification process to help customers know what they need to take their next international trip safely”.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
US aviation authority announces inspection after engine failure of a Boeing 777
US aviation authority announces inspection after engine failure of a Boeing 777
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter / Broomfield Police

After the engine failure of a Boeing 777 near Denver in the state of Colorado, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has announced consequences. Machines of this type equipped with certain Pratt & Whitney engines should be strengthened and immediately inspected.

The agency has ordered extra inspections of Boeing 777 jets fitted with the Pratt & Whitney 4000 engine following the incident. "We reviewed all available safety data following [Saturday's] incident," said FAA administrator Steve Dickson in a statement.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Jaguar car brand to be all-electric by 2025
Jaguar car brand to be all-electric by 2025
Credit: unsplash.com / Shazzad Hossain

The car manufacturer Jaguar has announced its intention to become an all-electric car brand by 2025.

Under the motto "Reimagine", the company has announced a fundamental change in strategy. The future is to be contested with e-mobility and fuel cell drives. This will cost the company a lot, with annual costs of around 2.8 billion euros for the changeover.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
KLM suspends all of its long-haul flights
Boeing 787-900 above the dutch coast
Boeing 787-900 above the dutch coast Credit: KLM

The Dutch airline KLM will suspend all its intercontinental flights and some European routes from Friday now that the Netherlands requires a rapid coronavirus test before entry.

New requirements mandated by the government require passengers to obtain a negative Covid-19 rapid test result no later than four hours prior to departure to the Netherlands. In addition, passengers must also have a negative result from a PCR test conducted within 72 hours from their flight's departure to be let into the country.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
United Airlines posts a loss of $1.9 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020
An United Airlines Boeing 737 Max 9
An United Airlines Boeing 737 Max 9 Credit: United Airlines

United Airlines Holdings Inc. late Wednesday posted its fourth straight quarter of losses, saying it expects its capacity to be down at least 51% in the current quarter. The company swung to a net loss of $1.9 billion during the last quarter of 2020, with operating revenue of $3.41 billion, compared with $10.9 billion a year ago.

United stock has lost about 50% in the past 12 months, contrasting with gains around 16% for the S&P 500 index.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Tesla pays €100 million deposit to avoid construction stop of Berlin factory
Tesla pays €100 million deposit to avoid construction stop of Berlin factory
Credit: unsplash.com / Priscilla Du Preez

Shortly before the deadline, US electric car manufacturer Tesla has deposited a security deposit required by Brandenburg for the construction of the factory in Grünheide near Berlin. Tesla management late Friday night confirmed the agreement between Tesla Brandenburg and the State Office for the Environment for securing any dismantling obligations, the Environment Ministry announced Saturday.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Norway electric car sales made up 54% of market share in 2020
Norway electric car sales made up 54% of market share in 2020
Credit: unsplash.com / Andrew Roberts

Norway has become the first country in the world to sell more electric cars than those powered by petrol, diesel or hybrid engines. Battery Electric vehicles made up a record 54.3% of all new cars sold in 2020. Fully electric vehicles are exempt from tax in Norway.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Boing confirms production of 747 will end in 2022
Boing confirms production of 747 will end in 2022
Credit: unsplash.com / Nick Herasimenka

On Tuesday Boing announced it will end production of the 747 in 2022 with the last four 747s being sold to Atlas Air Worldwide. The 747 revolutionised aviation when it was first introduced in the 1970s by hauling more people, at lower cost. However, since upgrading to a new 747-8 model in 2011, only 47 were sold to passenger carriers as the upgrade could not complete with the Airbus A380.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Tesla asked to recall 158,000 cars
Tesla asked to recall 158,000 cars
Credit: unsplash.com / Jorgen Hendriksen

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has asked Tesla to recall 158,000 Model S and Model X vehicles that could suffer from failing display consoles. The "media control units" allow owners to access their vehicle’s backup camera, climate controls, and Tesla’s Autopilot driver assistance system. Failure would increase the risk of a crash, the safety agency says.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Germany starts using new government jet Airbus A350-900

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) was allowed to use the Airbus A350-900 for the first time for a trip to Egypt.

The new jet is 67 meters long, can reach speeds of up to 960 kilometers per hour, flies more than 13,000 meters high and can reach any destination worldwide without a stopover.

Being the the first of three new acquisitions, the two other A350-900s are to be delivered for the Bundeswehr's "white fleet" by 2022.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Black box of missing Indonesian Boeing 737-500 has been found

Search teams on Sunday discovered the flight recorder of the missing Boeing 737-500 of the Indonesian company Sriwijaya Air in the sea. This was announced by the country's army chief.

After the suspected crash of the passenger plane, police also reported the discovery of body parts of passengers. The body parts were found off the coast of the capital Jakarta, a police spokesman told Metro TV. The plane, operated by Indonesian airline Sriwijaya Air with 62 people on board, had disappeared from radar just minutes after takeoff on Saturday and had been considered missing ever since.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Indonesian Boeing 737 has gone missing mid-flight

According to reports from the BBC and Flightradar24.com an Indonesian Boeing 737 has gone missing and lost contact en route to Pontianak in the West Kalimantan province.

The plane had taken-off from Jakarta and lost 3,000m in altitude in less than one minute before losing contact.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Ryanair to operate "few, if any" flights to or from the UK & Ireland
Ryanair to operate "few, if any" flights to or from the UK & Ireland
Credit: unsplash.com/Sangga Rima Roman Selia

Due to new lockdowns in Ireland, the United Kingdom and some other EU countries, the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair is drastically cutting its flight offerings starting January 21, the company announced Thursday.

From January 21, Ryanair plans to operate "few, if any" flights to and from British and Irish airports. This will apply until the severe travel restrictions are lifted.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Boeing 737 Max passenger flights resume in the U.S. for the first time since March 2019
Boeing 737 Max - N120IS
Boeing 737 Max - N120IS Credit: Steve Lynes (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Boeing 737 Max has returned to passenger service in the U.S. Tuesday morning with an American Airlines Flight 718 departed Miami International Airport at 10:40 (ET) for New York’s LaGuardia Airport.

This was the first U.S. commercial flight of Boeing’s 737 Max since two deadly crashes prompted a worldwide grounding of the planes in March 2019.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Elon Musk states he wanted to sell Tesla to Apple, but Tim Cook refused
Elon Musk states he wanted to sell Tesla to Apple, but Tim Cook refused
Credit: @elonmusk via Twitter

Tesla CEO Elon Musk wrote in a tweet that "during the darkest days of the Model 3, I approached Tim Cook to discuss with him possibility of Apple acquiring Tesla - for one-tenth of our current value. He refused to attend the meeting".

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Apple aims to produce self-driving cars by 2024, Reuters reports
Apple aims to produce self-driving cars by 2024, Reuters reports
Credit: unsplash/Carles Rabada

Reuters reports that Apple is aiming to produce self-driving passenger vehicles, known as "Project Titan", by 2024. The cars are rumoured to include a breakthrough battery technology, sources told Reuters. Apple has declined to comment on the matter.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Virgin Atlantic passengers require negative Covid-19 tests to fly from London to US
Virgin Atlantic passengers require negative Covid-19 tests to fly from London to US
Credit: Alan Wilson, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

Virgin Atlantic has announced that all passengers travelling from London to the United States will be required to show proof of a negative Covid-19 vaccine. The new requirement will go in effect on December 24.

“With the health and safety of our customers and people always our number one priority, we will require all travellers to present evidence of a negative LAMP or PCR Covid-19 test, taken up to 72 hours prior to departure, including on-site at the airport,” Virgin said in a statement.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Cabin crew asked to wear nappies to "reduce virus risk"
Cabin crew asked to wear nappies to "reduce virus risk"
Credit: unsplash/@ewxy

The Chinese aviation regulator has sparked some controversy today by requesting that cabin crew wear disposable nappies, and refrain from using onboard toilets to reduce the risk of catching COVID-19.

This advice has been published in a new guideline book for airlines under 'personal protective equipment'.

The regulator was quick to point out that this requirement is only for flights into high COVID-19 areas; where infection exceeds 500 per 1 million people.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Airline fires top manager after pilots flew penis-shaped flight route
Airline fires top manager after pilots flew penis-shaped flight route
Credit: Courtesy of Flightradar

Pilots of the Russian state-controlled airline Pobeda have chosen a route that traces the contours of a male sexual organ during an unauthorized maneuver with an aircraft with 100 passengers on board.

The airline's supervisory board has now drawn the consequences in this case: The head of the company was warned and his deputy fired, as the Moscow newspaper "RBK" reported on Wednesday.

According to the report, the pilots wanted the maneuver to be understood as a solidarity action for the Russian soccer player Artjom Dsjuba. As the captain of the national team, Dsjuba had been excluded from the games in November after an intimate video of him was widely viewed on the Internet.

The departure from the route, which was dangerous for passengers, was said to have occurred on a flight from Moscow to Ekaterinburg on November 11. Pobeda is a subsidiary of the Russian airline Aeroflot.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
KLM to offer Covid-19 tested flights between Amsterdam and Atlanta
Boeing 777-200 ER of KLM at Amsterdam's Schipol Airport
Boeing 777-200 ER of KLM at Amsterdam's Schipol Airport Credit: Hugh Llewelyn (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

KLM announced on Friday it would begin offering Covid-19 tested flights between Amsterdam and Atlanta. The Dutch airline is the latest example of a European company adopting a testing strategy to increase passenger confidence in flying amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Under the KLM plan, travellers receive one test five days before their flight, another shortly before the flight, and a third after landing.

"Until an approved working vaccine is available worldwide, this testing program represents the first step towards the international travel industry's recovery," KLM CEO Pieter Elbers said in a statement.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Ryanair to close base in Vienna
Ryanair to close base in Vienna
Credit: unsplash/Portuguese Gravity

British budget airline Ryanair will close its Vienna, Austria, base by the end of 2020, the Austrian national public service broadcaster ORF reports. Vienna-based employees are being told they can either relocate to a different location or lose their job.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Qantas CEO announces Covid-19 vaccination requirement in order to fly
Qantas CEO announces Covid-19 vaccination requirement in order to fly
Credit: unsplash.com / John Kappa ツ

According to the CEO of the airline Qantas, implementing a Covid-19 vaccination requirement for passengers would be "a necessity" as soon as vaccines become widely available. He also stated that "talking to my colleagues in other airlines around the globe" this requirement could be a widespread measure against the virus.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
IATA: Airlines would need another $80 billion in aid to survive
BER Airport
BER Airport Credit: Érico Andrei (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

According to IATA, airlines would need an additional $80 billion to survive the Covid-19 crisis. Governments already injected $160 billion into the sector.

IATA has predicted a painfully slow recovery with a return to pre-crisis traffic levels only in 2024 and passenger numbers still down 30% next year.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
FAA approves Boeing's 737 Max to fly passengers again
Boeing 737 Max - N120IS
Boeing 737 Max - N120IS Credit: Steve Lynes (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued an order Wednesday that paved the way for the troubled Boeing 737 Max to carry passengers again, ending the jet's 20-month grounding.

After the FAA announcement, the Air Line Pilots Association released a statement saying it "believes that the engineering fixes to the flight-critical aircraft systems are sound and will be an effective component that leads to the safe return to service of the 737 MAX."

When the aircraft returns to the skies, some airlines are likely to downplay the "Max" label using the plane's formal variant names, such as "737 -7" or "737 -8," Reuters reports, citing industry sources familiar with the branding.

Transportation • Public, Railway & Bus Transportation
Virgin Hyperloop tested first passenger journey
Virgin Hyperloop tested first passenger journey
Credit: Virgin Hyperloop

Virgin Hyperloop has trialled the first ride on its test track Sunday in Las Vegas, Nevada. In the trial, two company staff members travelled the 500m test track in 15 seconds, reaching 172km/h. Virgin's system involves pods inside vacuum tubes carrying passengers at high speeds.

The company, founded in 2014, and previously known as was previously known as Hyperloop One and Virgin Hyperloop One, received investment from the Virgin Group in 2017.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
German capital airport BER opens after nine years of delays
German capital airport BER opens after nine years of delays
Credit: unsplash.com / reisetopia

After a delay of nine years, the new airport of the German capital Berlin the BER has been opened. Due to the Covid-19 crisis, only a few thousand passengers per day are expected at the new airport in the coming weeks.

Berlin will now close the inner city airport Tegel. The last plane is scheduled to take off there on November 8.

Transportation • Public, Railway & Bus Transportation
Whale tail sculpture saves Dutch metro train

A Dutch metro train was saved from disaster Monday when it smashed through a safety barrier but was prevented from plummeting into water by a sculpture of a whale tail. The driver of the train, who was the only person on board, was unharmed in the incident which happened just after midnight at Spijkenisse, near the port city of Rotterdam.

Transportation • Cars & Automobiles
Porsche: New lawsuits over alleged fraud in the US
Porsche: New lawsuits over alleged fraud in the US
Credit: Delphine Sindynata (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

According to SPIEGEL information, the law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein filed a lawsuit on behalf of Porsche drivers a few days ago. Porsche has alleged sold vehicles that use more petrol on the road and emit CO2 into the air than on the test bench. In order to manipulate the values, the group allegedly installed transmission parts and software in test vehicles, which reduced emissions in the laboratory.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Harvard study finds ventilation systems on planes filter out 99% of airborne viruses
Harvard study finds ventilation systems on planes filter out 99% of airborne viruses
Credit: unsplash.com / Alev Takil

A study by Harvard University found that the ventilation systems on planes filter out 99% of airborne viruses and "effectively counters the proximity travelers are subject to during flights." Thus the risk of contracting Covid-19 on airplanes is lower than in a grocery store if precautions are being followed, including wearing masks and screening passengers for symptoms.