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Air passenger demand up 6.2% but freight slumps

International passenger air travel was up 6.2 percent in August from a year ago but freight demand accelerated its plunge with a 3.8 percent decline, industry association IATA said Monday. “The industry has shifted gears downward,” said Tony Tyler, director-general of the International Air Transport Association. “The pace of growth in passenger markets has dipped and thefreight…

Court upholds use of airport body scanners

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Friday upheld the use of full-body scanners to screen air travelers, but said the Transportation Security Administration should have sought public comment before deploying them. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the machines, known as…

Radiation from airport TSA body scanners ‘minor’

A new study of airport body scanners by U.S. Army scientists shows that the machines produce a low dose of radiation, supporting Transportation Security Administration claims that a screening is equivalent to the radiation a passenger gets in two minutes of flying. The scanners, which use X-rays to check for objects…

35 dead, 200 hurt as two trains derailed in India

Two passenger trains were derailed in separate incidents in India on Sunday, leaving at least 35 people dead and about 200 injured in a day of carnage on the country’s railways. In the first accident in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, a packed train travelling at full speed was…

US citizen among Mexico hidden grave victims

NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico (AFP) – An American man who was reported missing in March has been identified among 183 corpses found in hidden graves in April in northeastern Mexico, a US diplomat said Wednesday. “For the moment we can’t give details of the victim, but we’re giving the relatives consular…

US puts brakes on bus firm putting people in cargo

WASHINGTON (AFP) – A Michigan bus operator has been ordered to cease all commercial passenger services after the discovery that one of its buses was carrying six passengers in its luggage compartment, US officials said Saturday. Roger Haines was driving a Haines Tours motorcoach from Roscommon, Michigan to Clyde, Ohio,…

Delta charges troops $2,800 in excess baggage fees

It’s not uncommon for air travel passengers to complain about airlines’ baggage policies and treatment of customers, but when it’s members of the U.S. military coming home from Afghanistan raising complaints about unfair rules, the grievances tend to be amplified. Staff Sgts. Fred Hilliker and Robert O’Hair made a video…

Senator proposes TSA-style security for trains after al-Qaeda plans revealed

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A senator on Sunday called for a “no-ride list” for Amtrak trains after intelligence gleaned from the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound pointed to potential attacks on the nation’s train system. Sen. Charles Schumer said he would push as well for added funding for rail security and…

India cancels 14 more ‘fake’ pilot licences

NEW DELHI (AFP) – India’s aviation regulator said Friday it had cancelled the licences of 14 more commercial pilots caught forging their qualifications in a spreading scandal that has rocked passenger confidence. Cases of pilots exaggerating their flying time while training and other irregularities have emerged since a captain who…

Boeing’s new 747 successfully completes first test flight

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Boeing Co’s 747-8 Intercontinental, the new passenger version of its legendary jumbo jet, completed its maiden flight without a hitch on Sunday, marking a key milestone for the aircraft model more closely associated with Boeing than any other plane. The behemoth began its first test flight from Boeing’s…

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