The Cranky Ol' Bat

Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death! - RuPaul


Two Zeros and a Hero

First, we have two strong contenders for the 2005 Stupid Ex-Airline Employee of the Year Award!

Our first dishonorable mention goes to Gay Wilson, an off-duty flight attendant who's idea of a "joke" was to write a fake bomb threat note on board an American Airlines flight in 2004. She'll be enjoying a five-year layover in federal prison for that stunning bit of stupidity.

Our next dishonorable mention goes to former British Airways captain William A McAuliffe. A Norwegian court has sentenced him to six months for preparing to fly even though his copilot and purser were snockered. Mr McAuliffe himself was sober, but was faulted for not using his authority to ensure his crew's fitness to perform their jobs. The purser, Michelle Giannandrea received a sentence of 45 days. The case against the copilot, David J Ryan, has been postponed.

And now, for today's hero....

An unidentified US Airways co-pilot narrowly avoided a collision with an Aer Lingus flight at Logan International Airport in Boston on the evening of 9 June. He spotted the Irish jetliner taking off from an intersecting runway and ordered his captain to keep the plane down. The Aer Lingus jet passed over the US Airways jet, which took off without incident further down the runway. The planes missed by 171 feet, and both were going in excess of 160 miles an hour. 381 passengers and crew were aboard the flights.

The near collision is currently being investigated, and both air traffic controllers involved have been kept from authorizing landings and takeoffs until they can be re-certified by the FAA.


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