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F-16s escorted flight to Dulles after on-board fight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Fighter jets escorted a United Airlines plane back to Dulles International Airport outside Washington, D.C., after a fight broke out between a pair of passengers on the flight bound for Ghana, officials said on Tuesday. Police met the two passengers at the gate when Flight 990 landed…

Feds threaten to ground Texas airplanes if anti-groping bill becomes law

A bill that would criminalize TSA agents who conduct airport patdown searches was scuttled Tuesday night after the federal government threatened to ground all flights out of Texas. The proposed law would have levied misdemeanor charges against security agents who “intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly [touch] the anus, sexual organ, buttocks,…

Texas House passes bill to criminalize TSA patdowns

A bill that would criminalize the infamous “pat-down” at airport security checkpoints has made its way to the Texas Senate after clearing a key vote in the House on Friday evening. When the bill was introduced, it was seen as a longshot even in the Republican-dominated Texas House. That seemed…

Swiss solar powered airplane launches first international flight

PAYERNE, Switzerland (AFP) – Pioneering Swiss solar-powered aircraft Solar Impulse, which holds a 26-hour record for flight duration, took off from Switzerland on Friday on its first international flight to Belgium. The experimental emissions-free aircraft is expected to take about 12 hours to complete the journey to Brussels Airport, the…

House GOP aims to cut off new funding for TSA body scanners

Legislation proposed by Homeland Security Subcommittee Chairman Robert Aderholt (R-AL) on Thursday cuts off new funding for body imaging scanners used by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at airport security checkpoints. The Fiscal Year 2012 Homeland Security Appropriations Bill does not provide the $76 million requested by President Barack Obama…

Passenger tries to open door mid-air on Continental flight

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Passengers and crew on board a Chicago-bound flight on Sunday had to subdue a man who tried to open an emergency exit door mid-air, forcing the plane to make an unscheduled landing in St. Louis, authorities said. No injuries were reported, and the unidentified 43-year-old man from…

Former Miss USA winner: TSA agent ‘touched my vagina’

Former Miss USA 2003 Susie Castillo says she was “molested” by TSA workers. During a stopover at the Dallas-Fort Worth airport, agents required Castillo to undergo an invasive pat down after she chose to opt out of a full body scan. “I’m a frequent flyer and don’t wish to be…

$8 million of meth found in fake tourists’ shoes in New Zealand

In contrast to U.S. airports’ high-tech scans, authorities at Auckland Airport in New Zealand only had to use their naked eyes to detect criminal wrongdoing. Security guards at the airport noticed a group of 12 tourists walking funny, and when they stopped and searched them, found that they were hiding…

Kazakh man attempts to hijack plane, reroute to Tripoli

ROME (AFP) – Cabin crew overpowered a Kazakh man Sunday after he tried to hijack a Paris-Rome plane and have it land in Tripoli by threatening an air hostess, Italy’s ANSA news agency reported. Valeriy Tolmashev, who appeared very agitated, tried to hijack the Alitalia flight around 1930 GMT. The…

St. Louis airport closed, digging out after tornado strike

(Reuters) – Crews worked on Saturday to get St. Louis’ tornado-battered airport ready to reopen after it was hit by a roaring storm that also damaged hundreds of houses, tossed cars and knocked out power. Several injuries were reported but no fatalities. A preliminary count showed at least 750 homes…

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