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Crabs on a Plane & 6 Other Stories You May Have Missed


Though FlyerTalk attempts to cover a full range of stories, every week a few fall through the cracks. Here are 7 stories we didn’t get around to writing, but are still worth knowing.

Air India Flight Grounded by Clogged Toilets

Clogged toilets aboard a Sydney-Melbourne-Delhi Air India flight forced 148 passengers to travel to Delhi via other airlines on Friday. While en route from Sydney to Melbourne, the toilets clogged. Maintenance worked to resolve the issue after landing, but according to an Air India official, by the time it was fixed, the flight crew had reached their flying duty limit and was unable to operate the flight to Delhi. The incident was the third to plague an Air India long-haul flight this year, prompting questions about the carrier’s maintenance unit.

FAA Administrator Calls for Full Review of Contingency Plans

During the annual Air Traffic Control Association Conference, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta called for a full review of the agency’s contingency plans. Huerta cited the incident that took place on September 26, when a contractor intentionally set fire to the Air Route Traffic Control Center in Aurora, Ill. The incident resulted in thousands of delays and cancellations at Chicago airports this week, and Huerta says he wants to ensure the agency has the “most robust” means of handling similar situations going forward. The 30-day review will be carried out by the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association and the Professional Aviation Safety Specialists.

Korean Air Opens Food Truck in Houston

Korean Air, which began offering nonstop flights between Houston and Seoul in May, is currently touring Houston in a food truck. Two flight crews are operating the food truck alongside a catering chef, offering free samples of the carrier’s in-flight meals that include bibimbap, a bowl entrée; bulgogi-deob-bab, marinated meat over rice; and galbi-jjim, braised short ribs. The promotion began on Monday and is scheduled to run through October 26.


Ryanair Scraps Bikini Calendar for the Sake of New Image

Ryanair announced on Tuesday that it will no longer be publishing its annual charity calendar. The controversial calendar, which featured scantily clad members of the carrier’s flight crew, was first released in 2008. Proceeds from the calendar have been donated to charities in the U.K., Ireland and Germany. Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary opted to scrap the publication as part of an ongoing move toward a family-friendly image.

Live Crabs Delay US Airways Flight

A US Airways flight from LaGuardia Airport (LGA) to Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) was delayed by nearly an hour on Thursday evening thanks to live crabs. The crustaceans somehow managed to escape their cages in the cargo hold during an earlier flight to New York City, according to a US Airways spokesperson. Crew members had to sweep the crabs up before the plane could depart. Passengers shared their reactions via Twitter alongside #DeadliestCatch and #CrabsOnAPlane.


Analysis Reveals Airlines Lost Money During World Cup

Despite the record levels of travelers to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, a new analysis from aviation industry consultancy firm Air Cube reveals that airlines likely lost money during the event. Air Cube analyzed booking and pricing data on two sample routes to Sao Paulo and discovered a 15 percent increase in the number of passengers carries, a 30 percent drop in business travel and an average fare hike of $400. During the World Cup, the popular route from Madrid to Sao Paulo showed 25 percent less airline revenue than earlier in 2014. According to an Air Cube spokesman Jerome Perez, the World Cup’s effect “seems to have been to attract a high number of very price-sensitive customers but, crucially, to dissuade more profitable business customers from travelling at all.”

Nigeria Outlines Plans for New Flag Carrier

Nigerian Aviation Minister Osita Chidoka revealed plans for a $2 billion aviation expansion on Monday. Among the outlined changes, which are scheduled to be implemented over the next four years, Chidoka said the country is in talks with private investors to setup a flag carrier. Nigeria currently has no national airline. According to Chidoka, the new flag carrier will be commercially run and that conversations are underway “across many possible private sector organizations, both local airlines in Nigeria and then some international airlines.” Chidoka did not mention specific organizations.

[Photo: iStock, Korean Air

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