Congratulations, Mariah & Nick!

>> Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Mariah Daily Journal team would like to congratulate Mariah and Nick on the arrival of their double bundle of joy! We are thinking of you and that we share in the happiness of the beautiful new lives you have created!

Mariah Carey gives birth to twins on wedding anniversary
Singer Mariah Carey on Saturday gave birth to twins, delivering a boy and a girl on the third anniversary of her wedding to Nick Cannon, her spokeswoman said.

The babies were born shortly after 9 a.m. local time at a Los Angeles hospital, said Carey's representative, Cindi Berger.

Berger said the babies weigh over 5 pounds each, and the girl is 18 inches long while the boy is 19 inches. The names of the children were not immediately known.

Grammy winning singer Carey and Cannon, an actor and rapper, were married on April 30, 2008.

"Babies were born on their wedding anniversary," Berger said in a statement. "Not even Mariah could plan that!"

Carey announced she was pregnant in October. At the time, Cannon said the couple delayed telling people about the pregnancy because Carey once suffered a miscarriage.

Cindi Berger tells People "she's doing great" and they were listening to Carey's "We Belong Together" after the children were born. "I spoke to both of them and they are both completely overjoyed."

Asked if the birth was planned to coincide with her anniversary, she said: "No, not even Mariah could plan that. Nick was very nervous and Mariah was completely calm. Mariah thought it was another soft labor and Nick was driving her to the hospital and she very calm and the music was blasting. When they walked into the hospital, [Nick] was going the wrong way and the nurse redirected them to go to the maternity ward, and I said to her, 'that's right out of I Love Lucy,' and she laughed.


Life & Style: Mariah's Relaxing Retreat

>> Friday, April 29, 2011

Mariah Carey is the first to admit her pregnancy hasn't always been easy. Rushed to the hospital several times with premature contractions and on partial bed rest for months, the singer has faced the biggest challenge of her life trying to go full-term with twins.

But just days before welcoming a boy and girl, the mommy-to-be got the breather she needed: a babymoon at Terranea Resort in Palos Verdes, Calif. "Basically it's an excuse to do something decadent before the babies arrive," Mariah tells Life & Style. "Because I've been grounded in LA for five months — which is longer than I've been in one place for a very long time — going to the spa resort for a getaway, or babymoon, was really fun and therapeutic."

Nestled on 102 lush oceanside acres that afford daily dolphin sightings — "the setting is so indescribably beautiful," says Mariah — Terranea provided a breathtaking backdrop for playing rousing games of Taboo and Catch Phrase with her pals, nibbling on tasty treats from the Spa CafĂ© and indulging in as many relaxing spa treatments as possible. "As my fans know, I love the ocean, and I love dolphins. But I never dreamed I'd be sitting fireside in a copper tub watching schools of wild dolphins passing by throughout the day!" gushes Mariah.

Pregnancy Paradise
Her favorite treatment? Watsu water-massage therapy! "It really helps to relieve the pressure on your back, which is monumental when you're pregnant with twins!" Mariah says. "The therapist actually does the massage in the water while supporting your back — it's amazing. There are so many more activities and treatments that I'll be able to do here once I'm mobile again. I'm looking forward to coming back."

But first, Mariah and hubby Nick Cannon have important family business to attend to: They can't wait to meet the twins and see their adorable faces for the first time. "It's been so hectic around our home," admits Mariah, who's had her hands full decorating the newborns' nursery. "I'm literally counting down the days till we meet the babies."

Her Last-Minute Fix
Kicking back and relaxing wasn't Mariah's only reason for taking a babymoon — essentially, the singer's been homeless during the last weeks of her pregnancy! Indeed, finding a place to sleep became imperative after Mariah decided to renovate her and hubby Nick's bedroom in LA before the babies' arrival. "It was such a letdown to come into our bedroom after staring at the gorgeous ceiling mural that Marnie Vollenhals had painted in the babies' room," Mariah explains to Life & Style. "So maybe it's a bit over-the-top, but I decided to call David to re-create Marnie's magical orangey clouds and gold stars in our bedroom."


AirAsia X board to meet soon to pick advisers for IPO

>> Wednesday, April 27, 2011

SEPANG: Long-haul budget carrier AirAsia X has set the ball rolling for its initial public offering (IPO) exercise, as it has sent out request for proposals (RFPs) to local and international banks and will appoint advisers after a board meeting in June.

AirAsia X Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Azran Osman-Rani (pic) said the deadline for the RFPs to be submitted is next week before bankers are called in for a selection process in May.

“The board of directors will then have a meeting in June, in which advisers will be chosen and the specific details of the IPO such as how much will be raised, where and when the listings will take place, as well as the structure of the IPO will be ironed out,” he told StarBiz in an interview yesterday.

Azran said AirAsia X's IPO could raise similar amounts seen by its sister airline AirAsia Bhd, which raised some RM863mil through the issuance of 700.51 million new and existing shares in 2004.

He added that plans for a dual listing was still a viable option, but remained undecided on which market would be suitable for the airline. Some of the suggested markets for its dual listing include Europe, the United States and Hong Kong.

AirAsia X first mentioned its plan to seek a listing last year, after it separated its commercial operations from AirAsia. The reason for a listing is to help the airline fund its future aircraft orders.

Azran said that the company had taken steps to improve its balance sheet, having reduced its gearing from 3 times early last year to 1.5 times by the end of last year.

“In the middle of last year, we had a rights issue of RM100mil to our shareholders in a move to become more independent. Other balance sheet strengthening measures include executing a sale and leaseback for two of our planes as well as restructuring our aircraft deliveries,” he added.

Current shareholders of AirAsia X include Aero Ventures Sdn Bhd (52%), AirAsia Bhd (16%), Corvina Holdings (10%), Orix Corp (11%) and Manara Consortium (11%)

However, Azran stressed that a factor weighing on its IPO process was the lack of a route allocation policy by the Government, which is needed to provide clarity for the airline's current and future investors.

He said the airline needed to be able to chart its growth strategy and be certain of the routes it will be receiving before investors are willing to pump money into the company.

“Right now, investors will say we are giving you so much money, we know you can buy planes but where will you be flying to?” he added.

Under the Economic Transformation Programme, the Government wants to increase flight frequencies and air rights to 10 priority cities, namely Beijing, New Delhi, Melbourne, Mumbai, Osaka, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney, Taipei and Tokyo.

The plan to increase flight frequencies will be done via an air rights allocation framework to be spearheaded by the Transport Ministry.

The reason for this is simple as Malaysia is losing out to neighbouring countries Singapore and Thailand in tourism revenue from medium-haul markets.

AirAsia X has yet to receive approval to ply the Kuala Lumpur-Sydney route, despite having requested for it over a year ago.



Southwest 737 slides off Chicago runway

>> Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A Southwest 737-700 slid off the runway at Chicago's Midway Airport during landing this afternoon.

Initial reports say that none of the 134 passengers or five crew were harmed; damage to the aircraft is unknown at this time but none was immediately evident in photographs of the scene.

Initial reports said Southwest flight 1919 (N799SW) from Denver International airport approached and landed on Midway's runway 13C at approximately 1:33pm CDT during crosswind conditions and heavy rain.

Southwest Airlines says that passengers were deplaned and bussed to the terminal.

"The airline is making outreach to each customer onboard the flight to refund their roundtrip and issue them two complimentary roundtrip passes as a gesture of goodwill," the carrier says.

NTSB released a statement confirming the incident, and declared its intent to secure the cockpit voice and flight data recorders and interview the pilots.



Bahrain's CMH to lease aircraft to Emirates

>> Monday, April 25, 2011

Capital Management House and Novus Aviation announce establishment of aircraft leasing investment vehicle and conclusion of purchase & leaseback agreement of Boeing 777 aircraft with Emirates Airline

Kingdom of Bahrain - 24 April 2011 - Capital Management House ("CMH"), the Bahrain based investment bank, in partnership with Novus Aviation and Muzun Partner Ltd today announced that it has acquired a Boeing 777-200ER airliner from Emirates Airlines. According to the terms of the agreement, the aircraft, fitted with Rolls Royce Trent 8900 engines, will be leased back to Emirates for a fixed six year-term.
The lease agreement will be managed by Geneva based Novus Aviation Services, CMH's partner in the transaction and a specialist in aircraft sourcing, trading, leasing and other related services. Financing for the acquisition was provided by the London branch of DVB Bank, one of the largest transportation finance banks in the world, with Trowers & Hamlins acting as the legal advisors and Avitas having conducted the valuation and inspection of the aircraft.

The global aviation industry has shown consistent long-term growth despite the various challenges in the global financial markets, with the Middle East region representing one of the fastest growing travel hubs in the world today. Over the past 30 years, the industry has shown average traffic yearly growth of over 6% and loads are back to record highs after dips recorded in the second half of 2008 and 2009 in the midst of the global economic downturn. Overall, the aviation industry is performing favourably compared to other asset classes as a result of long-term demand and industry sustainability.

Commenting on the announcement, Mr. Khalid A. Al Bassam, Chairman of CMH, said: "We are delighted to close another transaction in the region's transportation sector, where we see opportunities to acquire income yielding assets that will not only provide CMH and our strategic investors with strong potential for capital appreciation but, importantly, recurring and sustained income streams. Aviation has shown to be a resilient sector and leasing a lucrative sub-segment with relatively limited downside risk. We are pleased to conclude this acquisition and leasing agreement with Emirates, one of the world's leading airlines. We continue to look for ways to further diversify our portfolio in promising sectors and asset classes such as this and as seen in our steady flow of recent deals in the logistics and transportation space including the recent purchase in December 2010 of a 30% stake in Skaugen Gulf Petrochem Carriers, a GCC-based petrochemical shipping company. CMH is targeting to replicate such transactions throughout 2011 and has a strong pipeline of opportunities for our investors in these and other sectors in the year ahead."

Within the aviation industry, the operating leasing segment has grown significantly in recent years with expectations for further growth both in absolute and relative terms expected to continue. These factors serve to position aircraft as real and mobile assets, which offer opportunities for relatively high absolute returns and downside protection as a result of their ability to generate stable and predictable cash flows from reputable airlines. The Boeing 777-200ER in particular is considered one of the most high-demand wide body aircraft models on the market and is currently in use amongst 39 operators worldwide.

Mr. Safwan Kuzbari, President of Novus, added: "This transaction marks Novus' long-term commitment to growing its aircraft leasing investments in partnership with prominent institutions such as CMH. Working together, we look forward to building on the success of this leasing agreement with Emirates and adding further quality aircraft assets to be leased to other top-tier airlines in the coming months."

"This acquisition underscores CMH's continued focus and strategy of building a strong and diversified income yielding portfolio, said Mr. Khalid M. Najibi, Managing Director of CMH. "Having partnered with Novus, a market leader in the aviation leasing industry, we are confident that we are well positioned to effectively leverage this asset and generate strong and stable cash flows from our investment. We are further pleased to be in the position to offer our clients this unique opportunity that allows them to gain exposure to the aviation industry at such an opportune time. We believe this is the right point to deploy capital and make investments in this cyclical industry, which is poised to benefit and grow as a result of the expected economic upturn in the region and the resumption of air traffic growth worldwide. We are currently in the process of structuring a product that will enable our investors to participate in the deal during the first half of 2011 and will continue to structure similar transactions with other government owned airline companies in the GCC."

CMH has an established track record of developing excellent long-term investment opportunities that provide for strong returns and which have historically been difficult for Shari'ah investors to access, helping to set CMH and its products apart. CMH is particularly active in sectors that are of fundamental importance to the development of the region's economies and has made significant investments in key sectors including: Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy, Power, Financial Services, Real Estate and Capital Markets.



Manufacturing Issues Suspected in Southwest Jet Rupture

>> Sunday, April 24, 2011


Investigators increasingly are focused on manufacturing-related issues, rather than a possible design flaw by Boeing Co., as they strive to unravel what caused the midair fuselage rupture of a Southwest Airlines Co. jet earlier this month, according to government and industry officials.

The officials said it's too early to draw definitive conclusions, and National Transportation Safety Board investigators haven't issued any statements hinting at what they suspect. But areas that federal and industry experts are examining as part of the probe, according to these officials, include riveting techniques, fixtures used to hold parts of the planes during assembly and uses of sealants on the 15-year-old Boeing 737.

The plane suffered a rapid decompression and had a five-foot gash rip open in the upper part of its cabin, about four feet above the windows, while cruising at about 34,000 feet.

Nobody was seriously hurt and the twin-engine jet, with 122 people aboard, made an emergency landing at a military base in Arizona on April 1. But the incident prompted Southwest to temporarily ground and inspect 79 of its other older Boeing 737s, and it also sparked a round of swift inspections of about 100 additional aging Boeing 737 models worldwide.

Four other Southwest jets were found to have fuselage cracks requiring repairs, but at this point no similar problems have been discovered on other airline fleets.

The primary reason for emphasizing potential manufacturing-related lapses or problems, according to these officials, stems from the fact that a number of the Southwest planes with fuselage cracks were built around the same time. And jets flown by other carriers, even some with a larger number of takeoffs and landings that the Southwest plane with the hole, haven't shown any signs of structural weakness or fatigue.

So far, according to one official familiar with the investigation, investigators have spent the most effort to understand the manufacturing history of the Southwest planes that had significant cracking of their aluminum skins. The plane with the rupture had logged about 39,000 takeoffs and landings, substantially fewer than the point at which Boeing experts anticipated it could face serious metal fatigue.

But according to officials familiar with the investigation, it's still too early to know whether the suspect Southwest jets illustrate a possible quality-control or manufacturing problem of relatively short duration, or some other potential causes.

The stresses planes undergo each time their cabins pressurize and then depressurize during a trip are major factors in creating cracks and possibly causing metal fatigue.

Possible production problems were first reported on Saturday by ABC news.

Federal Aviation Administration chief Randy Babbitt previously suggested that production issues were under heightened scrutiny. He told an industry conference in Miami earlier this month that the agency, among other things, was looking into "manufacturing techniques" along with Boeing. Mr. Babbitt said agency experts were examining existing aging-aircraft inspection rules and seeking to determine "are we looking at the right things?"

Eventually, more than 400 additional older 737 jets will have to be inspected around the globe, as a result of safety mandates by the FAA and foreign regulators.

On Saturday a Southwest spokeswoman declined to comment on the investigation. She said the incident plane was still undergoing repairs, but the five others identified with cracks have been fixed and were returned to service.

Boeing officials have said that the particular fuselage design on the affected airplanes was changed when a new version of the model was introduced in 1993. The so-called 737 "Next Generation" is the type still being built today and Boeing has delivered more than 3,500 of those, according to company data.

The safety mandates issued by the FAA cover certain 737-300, 737-400 and 737-500 versions, and they kick in based on the number of takeoffs and landings planes have logged.

Over the years, the FAA and industry have developed a comprehensive set of inspection standards and procedures to identify and repair fuselage cracks on older planes before they can result in major problems. The April Southwest incident shocked the airline industry, surprised regulators and spooked many travelers because until it happened, Boeing had concluded that the plane didn't need to undergo detailed structural inspections on that part of its fuselage until much later in its life.

The planes under scrutiny feature a certain type of "lap joint" -- the area where Boeing and government investigators have said the structural cracks originated -- and surrounding strengtheners designed to prevent cracks from growing.

The twin-engine 737, the company's most popular jet and a workhorse for carriers around the globe, first entered service in 1968. Since then, the more than 6,600 have been completed at Boeing's factory in Renton, Wash., just south of Seattle, and more than 2,000 remain on order. The planes requiring inspection were built between 1993 and 2000.

Before reaching Washington state, however, 737 fuselage barrels are assembled at a factory in Wichita, Kan. That facility, now owned by Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc., a major aerospace supplier, was at the time a wholly-owned Boeing factory. Boeing spun off its commercial airplanes unit in Wichita in 2005.

On Friday, Boeing said it continues to work closely with the safety board and the FAA to determine what caused the April 1 event.

In its statement, the Chicago aerospace giant said that "to date, inspections have been completed worldwide on approximately 75 percent of the 190 airplanes affected" by mandatory inspection rules, and only the handful of Southwest planes have "shown small subsurface cracks." "Portions of the panels from those airplanes have been shipped to Boeing, and we are conducting analyses to validate the initial inspection findings."

According to Boeing, "no conclusions have been reached about the root cause of the inspection findings" or how they may relate to the April 1 event, and "any attempt to draw conclusions on either would be premature and speculative."


Please click LIKE...

>> Saturday, April 23, 2011

Suka dengan picture anak buah kesayangan Remy (Nur Iman Qistina) di atas ni ?.

Remy ingin meminta bantuan dari teman-teman yang sudi membantu, sila klik picture diatas untuk membantu Remy dengan klik LIKE di picture tersebut...

Terima Kasih atas sokongan yg diberikan...


Boeing Delivers Lion Air's First 737-900ER With New Boeing Sky Interior

>> Friday, April 22, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, April 22 (Bernama) -- Boeing and Lion Air, Indonesia's largest private airline, on Thursday, April 21 celebrated delivery of the carrier's first Next-Generation 737-900ER with the new Boeing Sky Interior.

Designed to dramatically improve the flying experience for passengers, the Boeing Sky Interior features a number of enhancements.

The sculpted sidewalls of the interior provide passengers with a feeling of spaciousness.

New window reveals make the windows seem larger.

LED lighting can be programmed to provide soft blue sky overhead or to create different effects during the flight.

Large stowage bins pivot down and out.

Intuitive placement of switches and improved sound quality are further features that enhance the passenger experience.

Lion Air was the launch customer for the Boeing Next-Generation 737-900ER in 2005. Thursday's (April 21) delivery is the airline's 43rd 737-900ER.

In all, the airline has ordered 178 Next Generation 737s.

Lion Air operates an all-Boeing fleet.




Inside Mariah Carey's Nursery

>> Thursday, April 21, 2011


Life & Style, May 2, 2011 Issue

Soon, Mariah Carey won't be the only one wailing high notes at home! Mariah and husband Nick Cannon give Life & Style an exclusive first peek at their newborns' breathtaking nurseries--one in their luxe Bel-Air, Calif., estate and the other at their NYC apartment! Both rooms are filled with comfy chairs, plush stuffed animals and the parents-to-be's personal touch!

"I wanted to create a beautiful, tranquil, cozy environment for the babies," Mariah tells Life & Style in an exclusive interview. "Everything matches, but pieces are individualized to celebrate the twins as separate entities."

Separate -- but equally glam! "Designing the LA nursery with Gail Sedigh of AFK Furniture and world-famous decorator Mario Buatta was so challenging because I had such specific ideas I wanted implemented. I feel like I'm bringing two individuals into the world, so I wanted to do more than cookie-cutter styles in blue and pink." And dad Nick agrees. He wanted the twins' side-by-side cribs accented with pink and green bedding instead of the traditional pink and blue.

Mariah's favorite part of the twins' LA nursery? The cloudscape, star-speckled ceiling. "The ceiling has orangey-pink clouds in a blue sky with golden stars twinkling. It's based on two songs I wrote that are fan favorites: 'Underneath the Stars' and 'Close My Eyes,'" Mariah tells Life & Style. "Sometimes I just sit in the nursery and stare at the ceiling because I love it so much. To me, it symbolizes wanting my children to dream as big as possible and to let their imaginations be unbridled." Mariah also incorporated her favorite winged insects, butterflies, into the nursery and super-soft stuffed-animal lambs, what the singer endearingly calls her fans.

Mariah has also been busy coordinating a nursery for the twins at her NYC apartment. "I prefer the East Coast schooling over the West Coast," Nick tells Life & Style. "But there are other things that come into play, like work."

While Mariah has enjoyed her pregnancy, she and Nick are certainly ready for the arrival of their son and daughter! "Being a mother is probably the hardest job in the world. I feel like, in a lot of ways, children come into the world to teach us," Mariah says. "It's going to be a delicate balance between raising them around glitz and glamour and keeping them grounded. One thing I'm sure of is that I'll be grateful for the twins every day, no matter what."

For the full gallery of photos inside Mariah's nurseries, pick up the new issue of Life & Style, on newsstands nationwide Friday!



3rd Annual Kordel's Charity Walk for Healthy 2011


Walk your hearts out this 12th June 2011 to support the 3rd Annual Kordel's Charity Walk for Healthy Joints. It is a great opportunity to kick-start a healthier lifestyle, while raising awareness and fund for an extremely deserving cause.

The Arthritis Foundation Malaysia is a non-profit organization set up to :
1) increase awareness of arthritis & it’s related conditions to the public and
2) look after the welfare of arthritis patients who can’t afford joint replacement.

All proceeds from the participants of this charity walk plus RM1 from the sale of the Kordel’s promotional pack from 1st April – 30th June 2011 will be donated to the Arthritis Foundation Malaysia.



The BP Oil Spill, One Year Later: How Healthy Is the Gulf Now ?

>> Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Carl Safina headed down to the Gulf Coast just days after the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded on April 20, 2010. A veteran of the Exxon Valdez spill — and the head of the Blue Ocean Institute, a nonprofit that focuses on marine health — Safina wanted to see the Gulf oil spill up close, to document something he was sure would be an environmental catastrophe. Researching what would become the book A Sea in Flames — which goes on sale April 19 — Safina spent time with Gulf fishermen and ecologists, toured oiled beaches and spoke to people involved in the cleanup. As long as the oil kept spilling, just about everyone had the same opinion: the spill would be truly catastrophic for the Gulf and its coast. "We didn't know how it would stop or when it would stop," says Safina. "Gulf fishermen who'd invested their lives in the industry were convinced they'd never fish again."

Yet nearly a year after the spill began, it seems clear that the worst-case scenario never came true. It's not that the oil spill had no lasting effects — far from it — but the ecological doomsday many predicted clearly hasn't taken place. There is recovery where once there was only fear. "A lot of questions remain, but where we are now is ahead of where people thought we'd be," Safina says. "Most people expected it would be much worse." (See TIME's exclusive pictures of the BP oil spill.)

As we approach the anniversary of the spill, Safina's judgment is becoming the accepted wisdom: it could have been worse. That isn't to minimize what did happen in the Gulf of Mexico. Roughly 4.9 million barrels of oil blew out of BP's broken well and bled into the water, with a portion of that crude making landfall along the coastline. Add in the unknown effect of 1.84 million gallons (7 million L) of chemical dispersants, much of which were applied directly to the well deep below the surface of the ocean — something that had never been done before. Even the cleanup might have had an impact on the environment, thanks to the burning of oil on the surface of the Gulf, and the tens of thousands of workers who trampled along the sensitive wetlands of Louisiana, corralling crude wherever they could. Scientists caution that a single year isn't long enough to draw any final conclusions about an environmental insult so huge.

Yet the damage does seem so far to have been less than feared. Take the oil itself: scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimated last August that much of the oil had remained in the Gulf, where it had dispersed or dissolved. Many environmentalists attacked the report for underplaying the threat of large underwater oil plumes still active in the Gulf, yet later independent scientific studies indeed found that oil had largely disappeared from the water. Turns out we can thank bacteria. Scientists from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; University of California, Santa Barbara; and Texas A&M University traveled to the site of the blown well and found that microbes had digested much of the oil and methane that remained in the water. By autumn, the levels were back to normal. "It's very surprising it happened so fast," John Kessler, an oceanographer with Texas A&M, told me earlier this year. "It looks like natural systems can handle an event like this somewhat on their own." (See pictures of crabbing in the Gulf after the BP disaster.)

Indeed, for all the work and the billions poured into the cleanup, nature itself — and luck — played a very big role. Fortunate ocean currents kept some of the oil from ever reaching shore, while the decision to increase the flow of the Mississippi River provided an additional pushback. As a result, while parts of the southern Louisiana coast were hit hard by the oil — and crude can still be seen in the marshes — much of the Gulf Coast was spared heavy oiling, and the spill never curled around Florida as forecasters feared in the early days. Around 8,000 birds were identified as killed by the spill, though researchers suggest that at least eight times as many likely died but were never found. Even so, that would be far less than the 250,000 birds estimated killed in the aftermath of the Valdez spill, even though that spill was far smaller. Local conditions mattered — the Valdez spill occurred in the relatively compact Prince William Sound, maximizing the impact on birds in the area, while the BP spill spread out over some 1,600 miles (2,580 km) of the Gulf Coast.

The Gulf's valuable fisheries also seem to have escaped the worst damage. John W. Tunnell Jr., the associate director of the Harte Research Institute at Texas A&M, estimated in a report that the region's shrimp fisheries would rebound to normal within two years, while blue-crab populations would be back to normal this year and commercial fish species such as red snapper and grouper largely escaped any negative impact. (Oyster beds, hit hard by the oil, might take up to a decade to recover, however.) It's possible that the lengthy moratorium on fishing in much of the Gulf during the worst days of the spill — when up to 84,000 sq. mi. (217,600 sq km) were off limits — may have even given some fish species a much needed break from exploitation, allowing them to recover in population. (See a video about evictions due to the BP oil spill.)

Nonetheless, 1,000 sq. mi. (2,600 sq km) of water over the original Deepwater Horizon site are still off-limits, and we won't really know how quickly fishing will rebound until boats are back in the water in large numbers, reporting back to scientists. (The herring fishery in Alaska's Prince William Sound seemed fine after the Valdez spill, only to collapse three years later.) The already overfished bluefin tuna saw some of its spawning areas in the Gulf hit by the oil and dispersants, though it looks like the fish managed to weather the worst of the accident. In recent weeks marine biologists have found unusually high numbers of dead dolphins washing up on the Gulf Coast — the fate, some scientists suspect, of many of the species' young born during the spill. And Samantha Joye, a marine scientist at the University of Georgia in Athens, found evidence of dead invertebrates — starfish and even coral — on the bottom of the Gulf, along with oily, sticky bacteria. "These are keystone species to the ecosystem," Joye said at the meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in February.

Indeed, that's the challenge for any scientists trying to tally up the ecological cost of the oil spill. We simply don't know enough about what has happened — and what may happen in the years and decades to come. "The Gulf spill is far from over," says Doug Inkley, senior scientist with the National Wildlife Federation. A year has passed, but we may only be at the beginning.

See pictures of people protesting BP.

See 12 people to blame for the oil spill.


Malaysians plagued by poor purchasing power

>> Tuesday, April 19, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, April 19 — Malaysians who find themselves affording less than their contemporaries overseas have distorted and inefficient markets, lack of competition, low wages and a weak ringgit to thank for their poor purchasing power, which in the case of KL, is only 34 per cent that of New York.

Despite government assurances stating that inflation is under control, Malaysians are becoming increasingly restive over the cost of goods in relation to wages, especially those who are able to compare the corresponding price-to-wage ratios in developed economies.

Malaysians who have experienced working and living abroad often experience sticker shock when they come back and see prices in KL.

“Oh my God, a Tiramisu is RM15!” said Calvin Lee, a Malaysian who has lived in Sydney, Singapore and now London, referring to what cafes in KL are charging for a slice of cake as compared to about GBP5 (RM25) in London.

Aidi Zalman, a consultant who studied in the UK, told The Malaysian Insider that salaries in London could go much further than KL.

He had worked part-time as a waiter in London and noted that a single day’s wages of about GBP50-60 was already enough for him to buy a pair of branded shoes and even a low-end iPod, a concept unthinkable for local waiters.

“GBP100 can feed two apartments of students for a week,” he said. “Here you can spend RM100 and get hardly anything.”

“I hate it when politicians make stupid statements like Malaysia is cheap,” said Edward Seah, an engineer who has previously worked in Singapore and the US. “Prices might seem cheap when you convert it to US dollars yes, but then we should also convert our salaries to US dollars.”

Victor Wong, a Malaysian expat in Sydney, said that Australians get more mileage out of their money.

He gave the example of clothes where he said he can get a good quality shirt for about AUD100 but would need to spend about RM200 to get similar quality in KL.

Wong pointed out that even Asian food could be more affordable for those living in Sydney than KL.

“You pay RM15 for a bowl of soup noodles in KL shopping centres but only AUD10 in Sydney shopping centres,” he said.

The 2010 Prices and Wages report by Swiss bank UBS AG show that residents in KL have only 33.8 per cent the purchasing power of their counterparts in New York, 42 per cent that of London, 33.7 per cent that of Sydney, 32.6 per cent that of Los Angeles and 31.6 per cent that of Zurich.

The same study showed that on average, KL residents have to work 22 minutes to afford a loaf of bread as compared with 18 minutes in Los Angeles, 16 minutes in Sydney, 15 minutes in Tokyo and 12 minutes in Zurich.

The figures grow much worse for imported items. To buy an iPod Nano, a KL worker would have to labour a whopping 52 hours as compared with just 9.5 hours in Los Angeles and Sydney, 12 hours in Tokyo and nine hours in Zurich.

A check on salaries and prices in selected developed country cities by The Malaysian Insider showed that despite being touted as one of the world’s least expensive cities, KL residents pay as much or even more for chicken, broadband, cars and mobile phones as a percentage of their income.

Communications, for example, is one area where Malaysians are paying notably more than residents in developed countries even after currency conversion.

A 5Mbps broadband package costs RM149 in KL while in London, a 10Mbps package would cost GBP13.50, in Melbourne a 5-8Mbps package costs AUD40 and in New York, a 7Mbps service costs USD41.95.

Those who want to buy an iPhone 4 in KL, meanwhile, would have to pay RM1990 with a basic 24-month contract while in London, residents can get an iPhone 4 for just GBP199 with a basic 24-month contract and in Singapore, it costs just SGD210 with a basic contract.

Maybank Investment Bank chief economist Suhaimi Ilias said that what is important is local perception and not official inflation figures which claimed that the inflation rate in Malaysia was only 1.7 per cent last year.

“I think on the ground, not many people feel we are cheap,” said Suhaimi. “They feel that the cost of living is high regardless of what the inflation figures are.”

He added that inefficiency and lack of competition are contributing to the higher prices in Malaysia.

“I can’t understand why a motorcycle should have to cost RM6,000-7,000 and a car like the Perodua Viva should cost over RM30,000,” he said.

RAM Holdings chief economist Dr Yeah Kim Leng said that cars are one of the sectors where the Malaysian market suffers the heaviest distortion.

A Honda Civic in KL costs about RM115,000, or 20 times the average monthly salary of an auditor.

In Melbourne and London by comparison, a Honda Civic costs AUD25,000 and GBP19,000 respectively, or only about three times the average salary of an auditor in those cities.

The high cost of cars is part of the reason that Malaysians have leveraged themselves to a record 76 per cent of the country’s GDP.

Bank Negara statistics show that at the end of last year, 20 per cent of Malaysian household debt was due to cars, an asset which depreciates over time.

Yeah also said that the ringgit is undervalued and distorts the country’s purchasing power for imported goods.

“We need to ensure prices are right and that there are no market distortions, no subsidies and allow market prices,” he said.

But even if the ringgit is allowed to rise, there is no guarantee that savings would be passed on to consumers. The ringgit is now hovering at RM3.02 to the US dollar but Goldman Sachs predicated yesterday the currency could hit RM2.98 to the US dollar in the next three months.

When The Malaysian Insider contacted the director of wholesale and retail at government think tank Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu), Ravidran Devagunam about the higher prices Malaysians pay for branded goods, he acknowledged that some retailers will maximise profits on luxury items not readily available in Malaysia but said that the government is “unable” to compel them to discount their prices even after the abolishment of import duties as luxury goods and apparel are not controlled items.

“However, we believe that market forces and consumer education will eventually force a price reduction of these goods over time,” he said.

The Federation of Malaysian Consumers Associations Secretary General Mohd Shaani Abdullah said people should question the prices that they are currently paying.

“Consumer protection will only come about when people make noise,” he told The Malaysian Insider when contacted. “Only then will politicians act.”


Transmile gets nod for debt revamp plan

>> Monday, April 18, 2011

PETALING JAYA: Financially-distressed air cargo operator Transmile Group Bhd has received the green light from creditors for its debt restructuring schemes.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia yesterday, Kenanga Investment Bank Bhd, on behalf of the company, said both the proposed Transmile Group and Transmile Air Services Sdn Bhd (TAS) schemes had been approved by more than 50% of the respective schemes’ creditors.

“This represents more than 75% in value of the respective schemes’ creditors present and voting in person or by proxy at the respective meetings,” it said.

Under the latest proposed debt-restructuring schemes, all the debts in its core unit TAS that stood at RM680.3mil as at end of last year were to be transferred to a special-purpose vehicle (SPV), which would be wholly owned by Transmile Group.

The SPV will also house some the proceeds from the proposed sale of MD-11F aircraft of US$68mil.

The scheme would also see a waiver of some RM60.3mil debt owed by TAS to two other Transmile Group subsidiaries.

Following the completion of the debt restructuring plan, Transmile Group will make the effort to invite new potential investors to the group.

The trading of Transmile Group securities have been suspended since last Thursday due to its failure to submit a regularisation plan to Bursa.


Mariah in UK's OK! Magazine

>> Saturday, April 16, 2011

Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon share their joy and excitement with the world in advance of the imminent arrival of their twins with a new set of photographs...

With her unique talent and signature vocal abilities, Mariah Carey commanded the world's attention when she made her musical debut as a teen in the '90s. In less than a decade she emerged as one of the most popular and widely acclaimed talents in music. As a singer, songwriter and producer, Mariah Carey has been recognised with the most prestigious accolades in the industry including five Grammy Awards, eight American Music Awards, Billboard's Artist Of The Decade Award and numerous World Music Awards, including the World Music Award for World's Best Selling Female Artist Of The Millennium.

As the best-selling female artist of all time, with over 250 million records behind her and as one of the media's biggest stars, Mariah Carey – who has been hailed as the most exciting woman in the world – has continuously raised the bar and set the standard of excellence within the music industry worldwide. Outside of her music career, Mariah recently received awards and great critical acclaim for her role in the film Precious, she has also launched her own perfumes with Elizabeth Arden and a footwear range in the US.

Mariah's husband, multi-millionaire Nick Cannon, has also achieved big success in his career. Known as one of the hardest-working men in showbiz, Nick launched his career in Hollywood in his teens and went on to become an actor, comedian, rapper and music producer. Nick is currently the host of America's Got Talent, CEO of Nickelodeon's TeenNick and host of his own breakfast radio show.

Together, Mariah and Nick have become America's new power couple, and in these new exclusive photographs, taken by photographer and friend of the couple Kristofer Buckle, they share their happiness and joy in advance of the arrival of their twins, a baby boy and a baby girl...

You're looking radiant! Are you feeling ready to have the twins now?
Thank you. I am beyond ready! [Laughs] On a serious note, I am so excited to meet our babies and I am looking forward to being a mother. This is truly a blessing for Nick and I.

How did you feel when you learned you were having twins?
I was elated, surprised and a bit overwhelmed.

In the images you look wonderfully healthy – what has your approach been to your diet and exercise?
As far as exercise, I love the water. I always have. I was swimming daily until the doctors advised me to limit my activities. There will be time for that afterwards! People that know me call me a mermaid because I love the water so much, be it an ocean, lake, water park, even a river or a creek. I'm actually in the bathtub right now!

Has your appetite changed – can you share any thoughts on any surprising or humorous cravings?
In the beginning of my pregnancy, I was cooking almost every day but I can't be on my feet that long any more, so that's a wrap for now. It's funny, with this being the one time in my life that I can actually eat what I want and indulge any craving, I thought I would have taken advantage of it. But in my case, I haven't had much of an appetite at all, due to the babies taking up so much room in my belly. I do make sure I get my daily meals, vitamins, but mainly stick with small portions of fruit and protein. Every now and then I have a toasted marshmallow as dessert.

How have your preparations for their imminent arrival been going – have you been able to get their room ready? And you said recently that you can almost tell their personalities already! Are you excited to be having a baby boy and girl?
The preparations have been going great! We've just completed the LA nursery and are in the process of getting the New York nursery set. It's been so much fun designing their rooms. Oh yes! You can tell the personalities a bit. In viewing our ultrasounds, our boy is all ready like Nick, like: 'Here I am, take my picture or don't,' and our girl is coyly facing the other way, like: 'No pictures,' waiting for a proper debut. [Laughs] I took some ultrasound footage of them in the womb that I think they'll definitely find interesting later in life. Having a girl and boy at the same time couldn't be more perfect.

Are you close to choosing names for them both? What sort of inspiration will you take to choose their names?
We've had names picked out since we first met, believe it or not. We go back and forth, but want to wait until we meet them.

Tell me about how Nick is feeling – you said he's been incredibly supportive! Is he as excited about the birth? Do you think he will be a hands-on dad?
Nick is so excited about being a father. He already has this natural talent with children, they take to him right away. He's so nurturing, loving and fun. He definitely will be a hands-on dad. He already reads stories to my tummy.

What are you looking forward to once they arrive?
For starters, I'll be happy when they get off my bladder! [Laughs] Also, it will be nice to breathe when they get off my lungs – but honestly I'm just looking forward to bonding with them outside of my tummy! It's a whole new beginning and I am so beyond excited about it.

And how do you plan to spend the first weeks and months as a family?
Hopefully, Nick will take a bit of time off. [Sighs heavily, shakes head, rolls eyes and laughs] As I like to say, he's the hardest-working man in show business, so that's great, but I'm like: 'Alright already, take a break, stay put.' [Said while having a mild contraction] This is one of the few times in my career that I've actually taken it easy, sort of. I am looking forward to spending quality time with the babies and Nick and that's our plan.



Malaysia Airlines enhances customer experience with new Airbus

>> Friday, April 15, 2011


Thursday, April 14th, 2011 14:03:00

SEPANG: Malaysia Airlines launched its new A330-300 aircraft amidst a ceremonial event at Kuala Lumpur International Airport this morning.
Malaysia Airlines managing director and chief executive officer Tengku Datuk Seri Azmil Zahruddin said the latest fleet was aimed at creating a strong and sustained platform to serve the airline’s discerning customers and for Malaysia Airlines to remain profitable.

“These aircrafts will serve the growing markets of South Asia, China, North Asia and Australia.”

The new Airbus A330-300 is the first of 15 aircrafts to be delivered to Malaysia Airlines over the next four years, as part of the airline's fleet renewal programme. It is the second fleet after the B737-800 to sport the dynamic livery with red and blue lines representing the Malaysia Airlines’ corporate colours.

The enhanced A330-300 has a total capacity of 283 seats, 36 seats in Business class and 247 seats in Economy class. All seats are equipped with AC power supply and USB port for laptops and electronic equipment. The new interiors are installed with mood lighting in cabins and spacious overhead baggage compartments.

The first commercial flight on the new A330-300 will be from Kuala Lumpur to Brisbane departing Wednesday (April 20), followed by flights to Shanghai, Osaka, Beijing, Perth and Delhi on later dates.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha attended the event. Also present were Malaysia Airlines chairman Tan Sri Dr Munir Majid, as well as representatives from Airbus and diplomat of France, Spain, Great Britain and Germany.



Drunk Malaysian ‘behaved like terrorist’ on plane

April 15, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, April 15 — An intoxicated Malaysian graduate had to be handcuffed and bound to his seat during a flight to Australia on July 22 last year, the Melbourne magistrate’s court was told yesterday.

Khairulddin Mohammad Yahya, 22, a Melbourne University honours graduate, behaved like a “terrorist” while on board the flight and had cursed loudly at the inflight supervisor and poked him in the chest before the captain left the cockpit to deal with him.

The incident, which was reported by Australian newspaper The Age, stated that Khairulddin swore loudly at the supervisor while a passenger told his mother to shut him up because he was frightening people.

Prosecutor Aman Dhillon told the court that Khairulddin repeatedly left his economy-class seat and sat next to his mother in business class after her requests for his upgrade were refused.

Dhillon said hours after the Malaysia Airlines flight left Kuala Lumpur on July 22 last year, he was seen in the vacant seat next to his mother. He complied with a request to return to his seat but soon after reappeared, after which the supervisor detected alcohol on him.

The prosecutor said that several hours before landing Khairulddin again sat in business where he called the supervisor a ‘‘mother******’’ and to ‘‘**** all of you’’.

The captain, who noticed Khairulddin slurred his words and smelt of alcohol, asked his mother to tell him to return to his seat and stop harassing the crew.

Khairulddin agreed, but later returned four times to business class before he was handcuffed in his seat and then was restrained with his ankles tied with tape.

Dhillon said his mother tried to loosen the handcuffs and lead Khairulddin to the toilet, then she began screaming hysterically and fell to the floor as he shouted threats.

Khairulddin however co-operated with Australian police when the plane landed.

According to Dhillon, some of the flight crew felt threatened and some passengers appeared stressed and frightened. One was crying.

Defence lawyer Anna Balmer said Khairulddin was ‘‘somewhat intoxicated’’ but wanted to sit with his mother who had medical conditions that included chronic anxiety, neurosis and depression.

Balmer said Khairulddin, a chemical engineer, acted uncharacteristically with poor judgment and behaviour, and that a conviction could jeopardise his visa status and work.

Senior magistrate Dan Muling told Khairulddin, who pleaded guilty to disorderly behaviour on an aircraft, that he was out of control.

‘‘It’s like you’re a terrorist on a plane,’’ Muling said.

Khairulddin was convicted and fined A$1,500 (RM4,500).



Air France jet clips small plane at NY JFK airport

>> Thursday, April 14, 2011

Air France jet clips small plane at NY JFK airport

WASHINGTON | Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:07pm EDT

(Reuters) - An Air France Airbus 380 jetliner clipped the tail of a smaller regional jet on the ground at New York's John F. Kennedy airport on Monday night, but no injuries were reported, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

Air France Flight No. 7, en route to Paris, and a Comair "Canadair" regional jet were involved in the incident, FAA spokeswoman Laura Brown said. Comair is a unit of Delta Air Lines.

"The Airbus 380 struck the vertical stabilizer of the Comair plane, basically struck the tail of the plane. The Comair plane evacuated passengers on the ramp. There were no reported injuries," Brown said. The smaller aircraft was damaged, she said.

A CNN correspondent who was on the Air France flight said the incident occurred while the Airbus was taxiing to the runway for takeoff.

The Airbus 380 can carry more than 500 people, while the Comair Canadair carries about 100.



Richard Branson jadi pramugari AirAsia 1 Mei

>> Wednesday, April 13, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR 11 April - Bayangkan seorang lelaki yang terkenal dalam dunia korporat antarabangsa menjadi pramugari ekoran kalah dalam pertaruhan.

Lebih menarik lagi, lelaki itu, pemilik syarikat penerbangan Virgin, Richard Branson akan menjadi pramugari untuk syarikat penerbangan tambang murah tempatan, AirAsia selama lebih kurang 13 jam.

Branson bersetuju memakai pakaian seragam pramugari, skirt dan blazer merah melayani kerenah penumpang dalam penerbangan khas dari Lapangan Terbang Stansted di London ke Terminal Penerbangan Tambang Murah di Sepang pada 1 Mei depan.

Beliau terpaksa berbuat demikian ekoran kekalahannya dalam pertaruhan dengan Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif AirAsia Bhd., Datuk Seri Tony Fernandes dalam perlumbaan Formula 1 (F1) musim lalu.

Dalam pertaruhan tersebut, beliau yang juga pemilik pasukan Virgin dan Fernandes selaku Prinsipal Team Lotus bersedia untuk menjadi pramugari jika pasukan mereka tewas dalam perlumbaan tersebut.

Selepas perlumbaan F1 2010 menutup tirai penghujung tahun lalu, Team Lotus berjaya mengatasi pasukan Virgin.

Orang ramai yang berminat untuk merasai pengalaman istimewa dilayan oleh tokoh penerbangan terkenal tersebut boleh membuat tempahan tiket sekarang.

Penerbangan tersebut dijadualkan berlepas pada pukul petang 4 petang dari lapangan terbang di London itu dan dijangka tiba di Kuala Lumpur pada pukul 12 tengahari keesokan hari.

Kesemua wang yang diraih hasil penjualan tiket penerbangan khas tersebut akan digunakan untuk tujuan amal.



Mariah on 'Babymoon' and Nude Photos

>> Tuesday, April 12, 2011

If you've seen Mariah Carey lately, you know the pop diva is about to pop! Mariah and hubby Nick Cannon are expecting twins next month. But before she gives birth to "dem babies" as the adorable couple refers to them, Carey spoke with "Life & Style" magazine about her babymoon and posing nude. Check out's exclusive excerpt of her "Life & Style" interview.

Mariah on how she came to take a babymoon: "A friend told me that before she had her son, she took a babymoon, which is something I'd never heard of before. Basically, it's an excuse to do something decadent before the babies arrive! I'm pretty sure most moms-to-be out there understand what I mean when I say that after a while of being pregnant, you start climbing the walls and just want to get out of the house. So I went to an amazing spa on the ocean with a couple of friends and, of course, Cha Cha and the puppies."

Mariah reveals intimate details of her fabulous babymoon: "Since at this point I have to really take it easy, we played board games like Taboo and Catch Phrase, ordered spa food and got as many spa treatments as possible!" (The foot massage was the best part.) "They had a method of getting the circulation going in my feet. Which slightly diminished the Sasquatch moment we're dealing with right now. lol!"

On being thrilled that she's capturing this moment in her life, nude: "I am so glad we took these pictures as a keepsake and a reminder of this time in my life. Right now I'm counting down the days 'til we meet the babies."

Finally, Mariah's hairstylist, Randi Peterson, revealed how this wasn't a typical photoshoot for the diva: "[It] wasn't your typical high-glam shoot. Mariah was able to stand up only for intervals of about 2 to 4 minutes per shot, when normally she'd be on her feet all night. I know she wanted to document this for her babies and fans, but they should know it wasn't easy."



Copter crashes in Sibu after ferrying DPM's entourage, pilot injured

>> Monday, April 11, 2011

SIBU: A helicopter crashed at the town square here Monday afternoon, just opposite a hotel where Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is due to attend a function.

City police chief Shafie Ismail said the pilot was injured and has been admitted to hospital.

There was no one else in the helicopter, he added.

It is learnt that Muhyiddin had arrived in another helicopter at the same place, just a few minutes before the crash.

The helicopter, belonging to Sabah Airways and among three carrying Muhyiddin's entourage, crashed at 1.50pm while taking off to return to Sibu airport.



Life & Style world exclusive: Mariah Carey poses for belly-baring photo shoot

>> Saturday, April 9, 2011

Mariah Carey
has posed for her fair share of portraits, but none has been as personal or emotional as these exclusive belly-baring snaps. Mere days away from welcoming her first and second child, Mariah proudly showed off her pregnant body to Life & Style.

"I was feeling very vulnerable about taking pictures at all right now, but then I didn't want to miss this opportunity to document this once-in-a-lifetime experience," Mariah exclusively tells Life & Style. "My ultimate goal was to share this incredibly personal moment with my true fans."

And the twins -- a boy and a girl -- were clearly ready for their closeups.

"The babies were kicking almost the entire time; it was unbelievable," Mariah tells Life & Style. "Especially the girl -- clearly she's a diva in training! We didn't start shooting until 1:30 a.m. because I was in the hospital from the night before until the day of the shoot with contractions five minutes apart!"

Indeed, although Mariah's not due for a few weeks, the twins could be making their grand entrance sooner rather than later. Contractions sent mom to the hospital on March 27. But for now, Mariah and soon-to-be-dad Nick Cannon are simply reveling in their twin bliss! And Nick says he is more attracted to his wife than ever. "I thought I couldn't love Mariah more," he tells Life & Style. "But I have a whole new appreciation and admiration for her."

Mariah adds, "Now I have so much respect for mothers everywhere, especially those who've had difficult pregnancies or given birth to multiples. We need to have Mother's Day once a week!"

For all the exclusive photos of Mariah showing off her baby bump, pick up the latest issue of Life & Style, on newsstands nationwide Friday.



AirAsia Bags Three Awards At Asian Excellence Recognition Awards

>> Friday, April 8, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, April 6 (Bernama) -- AirAsia has won three awards at the first Asian Excellence Recognition Awards by Corporate Governance Asia.

The low cost airline bagged awards for the Best Investors Relations Company for Malaysia, Best Chief Executive Officer for Malaysia and Best Investor Relations Officer for Malaysia.

In a statement Wednesday, AirAsia said this is the fourth award the airline has picked up in 2011, after receiving Asia's Best Low Cost Cargo Carrier Award 2011 at the Aviation Award Asia, Fastest Growing Foreign Airline for Cargo Award from Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport and Asiamoney's Best Managed Company Award 2010 two months ago.


United A319 lands safely after instruments became offline

>> Thursday, April 7, 2011



Government Wants To Set Time Frame For Removal Of Planes In Accidents

>> Wednesday, April 6, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, April 5 (Bernama) -- The government proposes to set a time frame for airline companies to remove their aircraft that have been involved in any accident or mishap at the airports.

Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Rahim Bakri said should the airline company face difficulty in moving the aircraft within the stipulated time, the airport would move it away and impose charges on the company.

"Moving an aircraft must be done carefully as the front part of the plane is very sensitive.

"Such an operation is highly supervised to reduce damage to the plane, especially its avionics system which consists of the plane's electronic and communications system," he said in reply to a question from Hee Loy Sian (PKR-Petaling Jaya Selatan) in the Dewan Rakyat Tuesday.

Hee had asked about the AirAsia aircraft (flight AK5218) which skidded at the Kuching International Airport (LTAK) due to rain on Jan 10, causing the airport to be closed for 23 hours.

Abdul Rahim said according to Clause 125(3) of the Civil Aviation Regulations 1996, the airline was responsible for removing the aircraft following an accident or emergency situation.

"Following that, an analysis was carried out on the incident because currently no action has been taken by the government on AirAsia for refusing to use the services of Malaysia Airport Holdings Berhad (MAHB) or other airlines to move its plane," he added.


Australia's Qantas to offload ageing Boeing 737s

SYDNEY — Australian carrier Qantas has decided to offload its ageing Boeing 737-400 planes, but the airline insisted Monday it was part of an overall fleet modernisation and not a "garage sale".

News that 21 of its Boeing 737-400s would be on the market from this year comes less than a week after the airline said capacity and jobs would be slashed as it grapples with natural disasters and rising fuel costs.

"This has been part of our fleet strategy all along," a Qantas spokesman told AFP. "It's not like we are having a garage sale."

He said the sales, which would continue over the next few years, would allow Qantas to replace the 737-400s, known as the workhorse of the skies, with the more modern and efficient 737-800s.

Qantas would not speculate on how much the sales would earn, but reports said each plane could fetch as much as Aus$20 million ($20.8 million) thanks to interest from low-cost Indian and Southeast Asian carriers.

Sales would boost cash flow for Qantas, which last month said the combination of recent natural disasters and rocketing fuel prices had created the airline's "most serious challenge" since the global downturn.

Announcing the cuts, Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said there had "never been a time when the world faced so many natural disasters", with earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand, and Australia devastated by floods and cyclones.

Record floods in Australia's tourism destination Queensland prompted $82.5 million in cancellations and other costs while New Zealand's deadly earthquake wiped $15 million from the bottom line.

Japan's massive 9.0 magnitude quake and tsunami brought another $45 million in losses.

News of the Qantas sale comes two days after United States carrier Southwest Airlines cancelled hundreds of flights to inspect 79 of its Boeing 737 aircraft after a hole in a fuselage forced an emergency landing.



U.N. plane crashes in Congo killing 32

>> Tuesday, April 5, 2011

By Jonny Hogg

KINSHASA, April 5 (Reuters) - A United Nations plane crashed while trying to land at the airport serving Congo's capital, Kinshasa, on Monday, killing 32 people, U.N. officials said. One person aboard survived.

"We can confirm only one survivor out of the 33 people on board the ... plane," U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq said in New York. The world body earlier said Congolese and foreign nationals were on board the plane.

The operator of the plane, Georgian flag carrier Airzena Georgian Airways, said the crew was Georgian.

A U.N. source in Kinshasa, who asked not to be named, said: "The plane landed heavily, broke into two and caught fire." There were strong winds blowing at the time.

Congolese Health Ministry official Joseph Kiboko said: "We sent eight people to hospital who were still breathing, but I don't know whether they survived. Both the pilots were killed."

In New York, U.N. peacekeeping chief Alain Le Roy said there had been four crew members, and that all but five of the 29 passengers were believed to be U.N. personnel. The others worked for non-governmental organizations, he told reporters.

A Reuters correspondent at the Kinshasa airport said the plane was completely destroyed and the wreckage was lying at the end of the runway.

Le Roy said the plane had missed the runway, probably due to wind. The United Nations would set up an investigation immediately, he said.

The Bombardier CRJ-200 jet, had taken off from the eastern city of Kisangani, a U.N. spokesman based in Kinshasa said.

Officials had told Reuters earlier that the plane was a CRJ-300.

The U.N.'s 19,000-strong peacekeeping mission is backing Congo government efforts to fight rebel groups that have been haunting the country's troubled east since a 1998-2003 civil war that killed five million people.



Four Gulfstream employees killed after test aircraft rolls over and crashes in a fireball

>> Monday, April 4, 2011

By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 11:22 AM on 4th April 2011

Four Gulfstream employees were killed in a fireball after their test twin-engine luxury business aircraft crashed at an airport.

Officials with the plane company said that two Gulfstream pilots and two flight-test engineers died in the crash at Roswell International Air Center, New Mexico.

The company said in a statement that the Gulfstream G650 was doing takeoff performance tests at the time of the crash.

Lynn Lunsford, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, said the plane had just taken off when it rolled and slammed into the runway on Saturday.

She said the plane's gear collapsed and the craft burst into flames.

The four who died have been named as 64-year-old Kent Crenshaw and 51-year-old Vivan Ragusa - both pilots - and technical specialists David McCollum, 47, and 48-year-old Reece Ollenburg.

Roswell Fire Department officials said there were no other injuries reported on the ground.

Joe Lombardo, president of Gulfstream Aerospace Corp, said: 'Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of those who were lost.'

Gulfstream reportedly began taking orders on the nearly $60million G650 jets in April 2010 with delivery expected sometime next year.

Mr Lunsford said the FAA and National Transportation Safety Board would investigate the cause of the crash.

Mr Lombardo added: 'We are cooperating 100 per cent with the investigation.'

Read more: http://www.dailymail...l#ixzz1IZZIBByr


Terengganu Wants To Be AirAsia's East Coast Hub

>> Sunday, April 3, 2011

KUALA TERENGGANU, April 2 (Bernama) -- The Terengganu government is in talks with AirAsia to make the state the east coast hub of the low-cost carrier, Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Said said.

The state also wanted to forge collaboration with AirAsia to train people from Terengganu to be pilots and flight engineers, he told reporters after launching the Terengganu World Invitational Jetrace Challenge (TWIJC) 2011 here last night.

Ahmad said the state government had a similar collaboration with Malaysia Airlines (MAS).

On the TWIJC, which is organised jointly by state government and the Terengganu Marina Club, he said it was a catalyst for Terengganu tourism.

It is being held over three days beginning yesterday at the Ri-Yaz Heritage Marina and Spa in Pulau Duyong, the venue of the Monsoon Cup sailing event.

Several big names are taking part in the challenge, being held for the second time, and they include Amy Green of the United States, Paolo M. Collini (Canada), Mehdi Menad (France), Pancho Marjak (Finland), Seth Milkinson (United Kingdom) and Toshi Ohara (Japan).

The challenge, in which 60 participants in 25 teams are involved, offers total prize money of RM114,500 in eight categories.




Fuselage hole forces Southwest emergency landing

>> Saturday, April 2, 2011

PHOENIX – A "gunshot-like sound" woke Brenda Reese as her Southwest Airlines flight cruised at 36,000 feet. Looking up, she could see the sky through a hole torn in the cabin roof.

The Boeing 737 lost cabin pressure after the hole developed Friday, prompting frightened passengers to grope for oxygen masks as the plane made a terrifying but "controlled descent."

A passenger called it "pandemonium." Another watched as a flight attendant and another passenger passed out, apparently for lack of oxygen, their heads striking the seats in front of them.

Officials said Flight 812 lost pressure because of a fuselage rupture. Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said the pilot made a "controlled descent from 36,000 feet to 11,000 feet altitude."

His safe emergency landing at a military base in Yuma, about 150 miles southwest of Phoenix, drew applause from relieved passengers.

No serious injuries were reported among the 118 people aboard but a flight attendant was slightly hurt, according to Southwest Airlines. The cause of the hole was not immediately known. The FBI called it a "mechanical failure," not an act of terror or other foul play.

Reese said the plane had just left Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport for Sacramento, Calif., when the "gunshot-like sound" woke her up. She said oxygen masks dropped as the plane dove.

Seated one row from the rupture, Don Nelson said it took about four noisy minutes for the plane to dip to less than 10,000 feet. "You could tell there was an oxygen deficiency," he said.

"People were dropping," said Christine Ziegler, a 44-year-old project manager from Sacramento who watched as the crew member and a passenger nearby faint. Nelson and Ziegler spoke after a substitute flight took them on to Sacramento.

Reese described the hole as "at the top of the plane, right up above where you store your luggage."

"The panel's not completely off," she told The Associated Press. "It's like ripped down, but you can see completely outside... When you look up through the panel, you can see the sky."

Cellphone photographs provided by Reese showed a panel hanging open in a section above the plane's middle aisle, with a hole of about six feet long.

The National Transportation Safety Board said an "in-flight fuselage rupture" led to the drop in cabin pressure aboard the 15-year-old plane. A similar incident on a Southwest plane to Baltimore in July 2009 also forced an emergency landing when a foot-long hole opened in the cabin.

Four months earlier, the Dallas-based airline had agreed to pay $7.5 million to settle charges that it operated planes that had missed required safety inspections for cracks in the fuselage. The airline, which flies Boeing 737s, inspected nearly 200 of its planes back then, found no cracks and put them back in the sky.

Julie O'Donnell, an aviation safety spokeswoman for Seattle-based Boeing Commercial Airplanes, confirmed "a hole in the fuselage and a depressurization event" in the latest incident but declined to speculate on what caused it.

Reese said passengers applauded the pilot after he emerged from the cockpit following the emergency landing at Yuma Marine Corps Air Station/International Airport.

"It was unreal. Everybody was like they were high school chums," Ziegler said, describing a scene in which passengers comforted and hugged each other after the plane was on the ground.

"I fly a lot. This is the first time I ever had something like this happen," said Reese, a 37-year-old single mother of three who is vice president for a clinical research organization. "I just want to get home and hold my kids."

Gregor said an FAA inspector from Phoenix was en route to Yuma. The NTSB said it also was sending a crew to Yuma.

Holes in aircraft can be caused by metal fatigue or lightning. The National Weather Service said the weather was clear from the Phoenix area to the California border on Friday afternoon.

In 1988, cracks caused part of the roof of an Aloha Airlines Boeing 737 to peel open while the jet flew from Hilo to Honolulu. A flight attendant was sucked out of the plane and plunged to her death, and dozens of passengers were injured.

Three years ago, an exploding oxygen cylinder ripped a gaping hole the fuselage of a Qantas Boeing 747-438 carrying 365 people. The plane descended thousands of feet with the loss of cabin pressure and flew about 300 miles to Manila, where it made a successful emergency landing. No one was injured.



THAI Receives First Delivery of Retrofitted A330-300

>> Friday, April 1, 2011

Bangkok, 28 March 2011 – Thai Airways International Public Company Limited (THAI) received the first delivery of five A330-300 aircraft with newly installed economy class seats by the German seat supplier, ZIM Flugsitz GmbH.

Mr. Piyasvasti Amranand, THAI President, said as part of the company’s continued aircraft enhancement program, since the THAI Board’s approval in June 2010, THAI is pleased to receive the A330-300 aircraft with 263 new economy class seats. “We have eagerly awaited this delivery and are pleased that our customers in economy class can experience improved products. Economy class customers can expect to enjoy a 32-inch seat pitch, 18-inch seat width, and a 9-inch personal screen with 100 movie selections,” said the president.

After undergoing the ZIM seat installation for one month in Germany, the ferry flight TG8920 left Hamburg on 25 March 2011 at 11:00 am and arrived at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport on 26 March 2011 at 03:00 am. This first A330-300 (of five aircraft planned for undergoing new economy class seat installation) is registered as HS-TEQ, MSN 1037, and royally bestowed as Si Ayutthaya.

THAI plans to operate the A330-300 aircraft, with Business class and Economy class offerings, mainly on regional routes. The Business Class products include a shell-type seating design that has a 58-inch pitch, a 20-inch width, reclining to 170 degrees. Business Class passengers on these aircraft can enjoy the new in-flight entertainment system on a 15-inch personal screen with more than 100 movies and short programs to choose from, as well as enjoy a vast music selection of 290 CDs.