Airtravel

Regional News • Americas • United States
Man found living in an airport for 3 months over Covid fears

A man too afraid to fly due to the pandemic lived undetected in a secure area of Chicago's international airport for three months, US. He reportedly found the staff badge in the airport and was "scared to go home due to Covid"

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 • 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.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Germany reports 56 percent less air traffic due to Covid-19 pandemic
Germany reports 56 percent less air traffic due to Covid-19 pandemic
Credit: unsplash.com / William Hook

There was little activity in the skies over Germany in the Corona year 2020: Up to and including 27 December, the German Air Navigation Services (DFS) monitored just under 1.47 million aircraft movements. This was 56 percent less than the 3.33 million flights recorded in the same period last year.

In the Christmas week, aircraft movements including overflights were only 38.4 per cent of the previous year's figure.

International air traffic had plummeted dramatically in March after more and more countries closed their borders to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The last time controllers recorded fewer commercial and military flights was in 1989, then for West German airspace alone. The previous record year is 2018, with 3.35 million movements.

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.

Technology • Internet & Web
Hackers leak data from Embraer, world's third-largest airplane maker
Hackers leak data from Embraer, world's third-largest airplane maker
Credit: Courtesy of Embraer

Brazilian company Embraer, considered today's third-largest airplane maker after Boeing and Airbus, was the victim of a ransomware attack last month.

Regional News • Oceania
Qantas lays off 2,000 more employees
Qantas lays off 2,000 more employees
Credit: Adam Moreira (AEMoreira042281) / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

All of Qantas' ground handling staff will be outsourced, laying off 2,000 employees to save the company more than $100 million a year.

Around 8,500 positions have been ditched by Qantas since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis.

The Transport Workers' Union criticized the move by Qantas, despite a bid by the 2,000 workers to keep their jobs.

“This is a dark day as Qantas management rejects a thorough and competitive bid by its highly skilled and dedicated workers to keep their own jobs,” said TWU national secretary Michael Kaine.

Climate & Environment
Study: Climate impact of aviation is much greater than previously estimated
Study: Climate impact of aviation is much greater than previously estimated
Credit: unsplash.com / Stefan Fluck

A new study by the EU's aviation regulator EASA has found that "aviation emissions are currently warming the climate at approximately three times the rate of that associated with aviation CO2 emissions alone."

This is due to non-CO2 emissions, which are harder to quantify and not well studied. The new study examined the impact of these emissions, including nitrogen oxide, water vapor, oxidized sulfur and soot particles.

About 2 percent of global CO2 emissions are caused by aviation, but that does not include the non-CO2 emissions listed above.

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
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.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Berlin's Tegel Airport closed
Berlin's Tegel Airport closed
Credit: Dennis Skley (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Berlin's Cold War-era Tegel airport finally closed its doors Sunday after the Air France flight AF1235 to Paris took off. Originally built to handle 2.5 million passengers a year, Tegel passed 24 million in 2019.

The shutdown happened one week after Berlin's new BER airport opened southeast of the capital.

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 • 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.

Technology • Smartphones, Hardware & Gadgets
New still in construction Berlin airport uses outdated Windows XP
New still in construction Berlin airport uses outdated Windows XP
Credit: Florian Schmidt courtesy Twitter

With a delay of almost nine years, the new Berlin airport is scheduled to be opened on the last day of October. A journalist from t-online has now spotted that parts of the IT systems at the Berlin airport still run on an outdated version of Windows XP that lost support my Microsoft latest in April 2019.

The system has been spotted in an elevator. Currently, it is unclear if the system is connected to the internet or to an internal network leaving the security implications unclear.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
Embraer reports commercial aviation revenue down by 82%
KLM Embraer 190
KLM Embraer 190 Credit: Dylan Agbagni (Public Domain)

Embraer announced Wednesday that its commercial aviation revenue had fallen by 82% to $109 million in the second quarter because of the Covid-19 pandemic. The company had a net loss of $315 million in the quarter.

The company also stated that 50% of its aircraft orders have been deferred to 2022, but despite having no cancelled orders, Embraer cautioned that long deferrals would make 2021 difficult.

Transportation • Air Transportation & Traffic, Flying
EVA Air will have a Hello Kitty-themed flight to nowhere on August 8
EVA Air Boeing 777-300ER with Hello Kitty painting
EVA Air Boeing 777-300ER with Hello Kitty painting Credit: Jeffhuang0627 (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

EVA Air announced Monday it will be celebrating Father’s Day, August 8 in Taiwan, by selling tickets to a Hello Kitty flight to nowhere. The company is looking for innovative ways to get in the air again despite travel restrictions to other countries.

The Hello Kitty-themed plane will take off from Taipei Taoyuan Airport and will land three hours later back at the same location.

During the flight, guests onboard will be treated to a special amenity kit filled with gifts, and be given the chance to purchase Hello Kitty duty-free items at a steep discount. The company also announced passengers would be served a meal designed by Michelin three-star chef Motokazu Nakamura.