I’m sad to report that today is my final day reporting on airlines and airports for the Los Angeles News Group. Next week, I will begin a new gig covering airlines in the Americas for Aviation Week.
I have had great fun during the past year with this blog, and we have built up a nice readership. I am grateful to all of you for reading and sharing your comments.
Once again, I’d like to thank my editors here — Michael Anastasi, Toni Sciacqua, Carolina Garcia and Frank Suraci — for giving me this opportunity.
I’ll be away from the blog for a few days, as I travel to Lima, Peru to attend the wedding of a childhood friend. (Please Tweet at me if you have ideas for what I should do while I’m there.)
When I return on Tuesday, May 27, I may post less than usual. As my Twitter followers know, I have taken a new job covering airlines in the Americas for Aviation Week magazine. I’ll be starting on June 9.
I’ll remain at the Los Angeles News Group through June 3. I have loved this job — my first covering aviation — and I am grateful to all of you for reading and for offering comments. We have had a great back-and-forth here, and I have enjoyed every minute of it. Many of you have taught me a lot about how this industry works.
I’m also grateful to my editors, especially Toni Sciacqua, Frank Suraci, Michael Anastasi and Carolina Garcia, for giving me the freedom to pursue my passion. They didn’t always understand my zest for airlines and airports, but they have always been supportive.
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)
You will soon see new signs at Transportation Security Administration checkpoints at major U.S. gateway airports, if you have not already.
The signs were requested by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and warn passengers about Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. The CDC says the first case of the syndrome was documented in the United States on May 2, when a traveler arrived from Saudi Arabia with symptoms. Another case was documented on May 11, also in a recent traveler from Saudi Arabia.
Here’s a synopsis of the illness from the CDC website:
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first reported in 2012 in Saudi Arabia. It is different from any other coronavirus previously found in people. We don’t know where the virus came from or exactly how it spreads. However, it likely came from an animal source. All reported cases to date have been linked to the Arabian Peninsula.
Most people infected with MERS-CoV developed severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath. More than 30% of people with MERS have died. Most of the people who died had an underlying medical condition. Some infected people had mild symptoms or no symptoms at all.
The signs are going up at these airports:
New York (JFK )
Los Angeles (LAX)
Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW)
San Francisco (SFO)
Minneapolis/St Paul (MSP)
San Diego (SAN)
Las Vegas (LAS)
Global Shipping giant DHL has had enough of Los Angeles traffic.
So what’s it doing? The company says it has contracted with a helicopter operator to transport time-sensitive packages from Los Angeles International Airport to downtown. DHL says the newish service will help guarantee that some packages can arrive by 9 a.m.
A DHL truck meets the helicopter at a downtown heliport and transports the packages the rest of the way.
DHL is using a Eurocopter AS355 operated for DHL by Helinet of Van Nuys. According to the company, it can transport more than 350 kg of cargo. That’s about 800 pounds for all you Americans out there.