Entries in Plane (19)


Plane Carrying Missoni, Italian Fashion Boss, Reported Missing 

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(CARACAS,Venezuela) -- Vittorio Missoni and his wife are reported missing, who were last seen on board a flight from the archipelago of Los Roques heading towards Maiquetia Airport in Caracas, according to the BBC.

The aircraft disappeared midmorning on Friday and has not be traced since, reports the BBC.

Missoni, 58, is the co-owner of the Missoni Italian fashion empire with his siblings.

The Missoni brand was popular in the fall of 2011 when they did a designer collaboration with Target and sold out of many of their products.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Hoping to Avoid Baggage Fees, Flyer Wears 70 Pieces of Clothing

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A budget-minded passenger in China was willing to put a little sweat equity into saving some money on airline baggage fees on a recent flight to Kenya.

According to Guangzhou Daily, when the unidentified man discovered his luggage was over the weight limit and would incur a fee at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, he emptied his bags and put on 60 shirts and nine pairs of jeans before trying to board his plane looking "like a sumo wrestler."

Unfortunately for the flyer -- and those behind him in line at the security area -- he was forced to strip down when a metal detector found a phone charger and other metal objects in his multiple pockets.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Private jet Carrying Regional Mexican Superstar Jenni Rivera Disappears

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Mexican officials have confirmed the disappearance of a private jet carrying regional Mexican music superstar Jenni Rivera that took off from the northern Mexican city of Monterrey at 3:15 a.m. local time on Sunday and fell off the radar 10 minutes (or 62 miles) after take-off.

The Learjet 25 jet is believed to have been carrying seven people – five passengers and two pilots. It was headed for Toluca International Aiport, located outside of Mexico City, where it was meant to arrive at 4:40 a.m. An official search for the jet was initiated at sunrise.

Rivera's publicist Arturo Rivera is believed to have been on that flight. His most recent tweets are of photos from Rivera's concert in Monterrey on Saturday night.

The Mexican American singer's most recent tweet is a re-tweet of what appears to be a fan's message.

Rivera was due in Toluca this evening for the taping of a Mexican TV show, La Voz.

Known as La Diva de la Banda and beloved by fans on both sides of the border, Rivera, 43, has had a groundbreaking career in regional Mexican music, selling some 15 million records. Among her many feats in a male-dominated genre, she made history in September 2011 when she sold out the Staples Center in Los Angeles, the first female regional Mexican artist to do so. Her reality show on mun2, I Love Jenni, is one of the network's highest rated shows. Rivera made her film debut at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in the indie family drama Filly Brown, due in theaters in January 2013.

The Long Beach, Calif.-born singer's personal life has often called for as much attention as her career. A mother of five, Rivera had filed for divorce from baseball player Esteban Loaiza in October after two years of marriage, citing "irreconcilable differences." Soon after, rumors of an affair between Loaiza and Rivera's own daughter Chiquis surfaced, which Chiquis addressed on Twitter in October by saying, "I would NEVER do that, Ever! That's a horrible accusation."

The search for Rivera's jet continues. This is a developing story.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Puckish Russian Offers Romney a Plane Whose Windows Open

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(MOSCOW) -- After Mitt Romney joked that “the windows don’t open” on Ann Romney’s plane, which filled with smoke last Friday, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitri Rogozin offered to send her a replacement: the AN-2, an old Soviet biplane which had a notoriously dubious safety record.

“No problem! We’ll send our AN-2 to Romney’s campaign headquarters,” Rogozin wrote on Facebook last night.

“Not only do the windows not close, but the doors sometimes swing open mid-flight. On the plus side, there’s fresh air to breathe, and you can take in the nature,” he added.

On The Tonight Show with Jay Leno Tuesday night, Ann Romney said the "window" comment was a joke meant to make light of how worried Gov. Romney was about his wife.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Chinese Passengers, Crew Thwart Attempted Plane Hijacking

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(BEIJING) -- An attempted hijacking of a Chinese passenger plane was thwarted on Friday by crew members and passengers in the skies above the restive western Chinese province of Xinjiang.

Tianjin Airlines Flight 7554 was carrying 100 passengers from Hotan Airport to the regional capital of Urumqi when 10 minutes into the flight, six men allegedly attempted to hijack the aircraft, according China’s Xinhua News Agency.

Crew members and passengers were ultimately able to subdue the men and the flight was rerouted back to the desert town of Hotan, where the hijackers were immediately taken into police custody.  Two in-flight policemen were seriously injured in the altercation while a flight attendant and seven of the passengers sustained slight injuries, according to authorities.

The police did not reveal the identities of the six men and made no mention of whether they were armed.

A spokeswoman for the Xinjiang regional government told the BBC that the hijackers were from the Uyghur minority group and tried to break into the cockpit using a broken crutch as a weapon.

China’s Xinjiang province has seen its fair share of ethnic violence in the recent years fueled by the growing resentment between the local ethnic majority of Muslim Uyghurs and the relatively more affluent Han Chinese residents.

Hotan was the site of a series of violent knife and bomb attacks last year that culminated in 18 Uyghurs taking over a local police station in protest to Chinese rule.  Fourteen of the attackers were ultimately killed in a firefight and the four others were arrested.

The Chinese media described the incident as a terrorist attack.

The Chinese government often blames such attacks on Islamic separatists who are trained in “a certain South Asia country,” a not-so-veiled reference to strategic ally Pakistan that shares a border with China in southern Xinjiang and not far from Hotan.

As of now, according to authorities, an investigation into Friday’s attempted hijacking is underway.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


NATO Condemns Syria for Downing Turkish Plane

NATO(BRUSSELS) -- NATO condemned Syria on Tuesday for downing a Turkish fighter jet last Friday.

After holding an emergency session on the incident in Brussels, the North Atlantic Council issued a statement saying, "We consider this act to be unacceptable and condemn it in the strongest terms.  It is another example of the Syrian authorities’ disregard for international norms, peace and security, and human life."

Turkey claims Syria shot down the F-4 plane over international waters without provocation, and called on NATO last week to hold the emergency meeting under Article 4 of its founding charter, which entitles allies to request a consultation if they feel their territorial integrity, political independence, or security is threatened.

Two pilots were lost in the crash.

"Our thoughts at this difficult time are with the missing Turkish aircrew, their families and their loved ones," the North Atlantic Council said in its statement.  "We continue to follow the situation closely and with great concern, and will remain seized of developments on the South-Eastern border of NATO."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Wreckage of Russian Commercial Jet Found in Indonesia

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(JAKARTA, Indonesia) -- Russia's struggling aviation industry was delivered a severe setback on Wednesday when its new Sukhoi Superjet-100 disappeared on a test flight over the mountains in western Indonesia.

Wreckage of the plane was found Thursday morning on the side of a volcano south of the capital, Jakarta.  Presumably, all 48 passengers on board, that included potential buyers, diplomats, business people and journalists, were killed.

The Superjet is supposed to take the place of the aging fleet of Russian commercial aircraft made before the fall of the Soviet Union.

According to witnesses, the plane was making its second flight of the day when it vanished from the radar about 20 minutes after taking off from Halim Perdanakusuma Airport.

Prior to the apparent accident, the Russians had hoped the Superjet would sell well in international markets with an affordable price tag of $35 million.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Russian Jet Missing After Falling Off Radar in Indonesia

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(MOSCOW) -- Authorities fear a Russian passenger jet has crashed in Indonesia after it fell off radar screens while it was on a test flight near Jakarta.

The Sukhoi Superjet-100 was carrying at least 44 people and vanished from detection after the pilot requested permission to descend from 10,000 feet to 6,000 feet.  The Russian news agency RIA Novasti reported that the plane was last seen turning toward a tall mountain range south of Jakarta.

Olga Kayukova, a spokeswoman for the United Aircraft Corporation, which owns Sukhoi, said in a statement posted on Facebook that the plane had been checked properly prior to take-off.  She confirmed that air traffic control lost contact with the plane about 20 minutes into the flight.

“We are carrying out search operations, set up operational headquarters,” she wrote.

According to a Russian blogger, search operations began using helicopters, but had to turn back due to bad weather.  A search party has set out on land, but has not yet found the plane.

The plane was part of a pair that were reportedly on a six country swing through Asia where it was being demonstrated for potential customers, including government and military officials.  They had already been to Myanmar, Pakistan and Kazakhstan.  They were to travel to Laos and Vietnam next.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Sleepy Pilot Mistakes Planet for Oncoming Plane, Aircraft Nosedives

Hemera/Thinkstock(TORONTO) -- A sleepy pilot who mistook the planet Venus for an oncoming plane sent his Air Canada jet into a steep dive that bounced passengers off the ceiling, injuring 16, and nearly caused a collision with a real plane flying 1,000 feet lower.

Air Canada initially described the injuries to 14 passengers and two flight attendants as the result of "severe turbulence," but a report released this week by the Transportation Safety Board of Canada explains what really happened over the Atlantic Ocean on an overnight flight from Toronto to Zurich on Jan. 14, 2011.

According to the report, the plane's first officer had been sleeping, as is permitted by Air Canada on transatlantic flights, when he was awakened by the pilot's report of the plane's position.

The pilot indicated that a U.S. Air Force cargo plane was approaching the Air Canada 767-300 at an elevation about 1,000 feet below the passenger jet.

The "confused and disoriented" first officer, however, believed that the planet Venus was the approaching plane, and was coming right at the Air Canada jet. He forced the plane into a dive.

Passengers who were not wearing seat belts, many of them asleep, were slammed into the ceiling and overhead bins.

Realizing what had happened, the pilot was able to pull the plane out of the dive after it had descended 400 feet. The U.S. military plane passed safely underneath.

Seven of the injured were treated in a Swiss hospital after the plane landed safely.

Astronomers say that on that night in January 2011, Venus would have looked exceedingly bright from the airplane's cockpit, and a groggy pilot could easily have mistaken the planet for a plane.

"It looks like the headlight on an airplane," said Joseph Rao of the American Museum of Natural History in New York. "It's exceedingly bright. It doesn't twinkle, it's not like a star in that it twinkles. It looks like a steady, white spot of light in the sky. In fact we call it the evening star but they really should call it the evening lantern because it is so much brighter than any of the other stars."

"On that night it would have been ten times brighter than the brightest star," explained Dr. Arlin Crotts of Columbia University.

John Nance, a former commercial pilot and ABC News aviation analyst, said it was "not outlandish" for a pilot to confuse an object as bright as Venus for an oncoming aircraft. "What's surprising is that it went far enough to take evasive action," said Nance.

A passenger onboard the flight captured the aftermath of the incident on video, now posted on YouTube. "We just had the most amazing turbulence," says the passenger, who notes that another passenger's laptop had gone flying. "I hit the roof, everyone is safe, but this is part of the damage," she says, showing damage to the overhead bins.

According to the report, the first officer had slept 75 minutes, and was suffering from "sleep inertia" and fatigue. Canadian regulations permit 40-minute naps, and pilots and co-pilots are supposed to be allowed an extra 15 minutes once awake to regain full alertness. U.S. rules do not allow in-cockpit naps.

"This occurrence underscores the challenge of managing fatigue on the flight deck," said lead investigator Jon Lee in a statement.

ABC News explored the connection between pilot sleep, or the lack of it, and air safety, in a series of reports in 2011.

In the U.S., more than two dozen accidents and more than 250 fatalities between 1991 and 2011 have been linked to pilot fatigue, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. The NTSB investigation into the Feb. 12, 2009 crash of Continental 3407, operated by Colgan Air, near Buffalo, N.Y., determined that both pilots were sleep-deprived at the time of the crash.

While the FAA has imposed some new rules to fight pilot fatigue, it did not address the problem of pilots who commute long distance to their bases, often spending the night in crew lounges, or in so-called crash pads near the airport, where quality sleep can be elusive. Both pilots in the Colgan crash were "commuters" who had slept in the airport crew lounge before the fatal flight.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Pilot Falls Ill and Dies as Plane Lands

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(PRAGUE) -- A Czech CSA jetliner carrying 46 passengers from the Polish capital of Warsaw landed safely in Prague Ruzyne Airport shortly after midday on Wednesday after the flight’s captain fell ill as the plane was landing and was declared dead soon afterwards.

The plane was on approach to the Prague airport when an emergency was reported and the first officer took control of the turbo propeller plane, an ATR-42-500, after the captain “who was 55 years old, was incapacitated due to health problems,” according to Peter Zmolnik, the president of the Czech Association of CSA Transport pilots.

“The captain had almost two decades of service with CSA and was based in Prague,” he added.

Czech CSA spokeswoman Hana Hejskova added, “The safety of the passengers on board of the plane was not threatened because the airline’s pilots are trained to deal with such incidents.”

The flight, OK-777, touched down at 12:02 p.m., a bit later than scheduled.

Doctors in Prague could not help the captain after the plane landed and he was declared dead half an hour later, Hejskova said, adding that the pilot’s family had been notified.

She declined to give the cause of the pilot’s illness or the cause of his death.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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