Travel News

US airlines warn of 'calamity' if 5G deployed near airports - AFP

JANUARY 18, 2022

US airlines warn of 'calamity' if 5G deployed near airports

US airlines are nervous about the rollout of new 5G telecommunications technology beginning on January 19, 2022, warning that the service should be limited close to major airports (AFP/Yuki IWAMURA)

The chief executives of America's largest airlines warned of a "catastrophic disruption" to travel and shipping operations if telecommunication firms roll out their 5G technology as planned Wednesday without limiting the technology near US airports.

Verizon and AT&T have already twice delayed the launch of their new C-Band 5G service, due to warnings from airlines and aircraft manufacturers concerned that the new system might interfere with the devices planes use to measure altitude.

"We are writing with urgency to request that 5G be implemented everywhere in the country except within the approximate two miles of airport runways as defined by the FAA on January 19, 2022," the CEOs said in a Monday letter obtained by AFP.

The executives, writing to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and other US government officials, highlighted the risk of "economic calamity" should Verizon and AT&T proceed with deploying the new technology before the necessary upgrades and changes have been made to aviation equipment.

"To be blunt, the nation's commerce will grind to a halt," they said.

The Federal Aviation Administration said Sunday it had approved some transponders to be safely operated within areas where 5G will be deployed, clearing "as many as 48 of the 88 airports most directly affected by 5G C-Band interference."

But the airlines are worried that remaining limitations at those airports, as well as a large amount of equipment still uncertified, could trigger a crisis including the grounding of thousands of flights.

In addition to the transport secretary, their letter was addressed to the head of the FAA, the head of the Federal Communications Commission and the White House's National Economic Council.

US airlines also have protested against the potential costs incurred.

- 'Immediate' intervention sought -

The executives called on authorities to "take whatever action necessary to ensure that 5G is deployed except when towers are too close to airport runways until the FAA can determine how that can be safely accomplished without catastrophic disruption."

The letter was signed by CEOs of major airlines including American, United, Delta and Southwest, as well as the leaders of shipping giants FedEx and UPS.

"Immediate intervention is needed to avoid significant operational disruption to air passengers, shippers, supply chain and delivery of needed medical supplies," they wrote.

"In addition to the chaos caused domestically," the letter continues, the lack of certified planes "could potentially strand tens of thousands of Americans overseas."

The FAA released a brief statement Monday apparently seeking to allay concerns about the 5G rollout's impact on aviation, but it stopped short of declaring any concrete next steps in the process.

"With safety as its core mission, the FAA will continue to ensure that the traveling public is safe as wireless companies deploy 5G," the agency said.

"The FAA continues to work with the aviation industry and wireless companies to try to limit 5G-related flight delays and cancellations."

Verizon and AT&T won contracts worth tens of billions of dollars last February to operate 5G in the 3.7-3.98 GHz frequency bands, and the rollout of the service was due to begin on December 5.

Unless the major telecommunications companies are blocked by federal regulators or reach an agreement with the airlines, they are now scheduled to turn on their 5G service nationwide on January 19.

Betting Omicron has peaked, England set to lift COVID rules - REUTERS

JANUARY 19, 2022

  • PM Johnson set to announce easing of Plan B rules
  • PM buffeted by lockdown party furore
  • England seeks to live with the virus, in contrast to others

LONDON, Jan 19 (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce the end of most COVID-19 measures introduced to curb the rapid spread of the Omicron variant in England as he looks to live with the virus after an apparent peak in cases.

Britain was the first country to limit international travel over the Omicron variant, raising alarm bells about its mutations, and in December introduced work at home advice, more mask-wearing and vaccine passes to slow its spread.

But while cases soared to record highs, hospitalisations and deaths have not risen by the same extent, in part due to Britain's booster rollout and the variant's lesser severity.

Johnson's approach to avoid lockdowns and live with the virus contrasts with a zero tolerance approach to COVID-19 in China and Hong Kong, and tougher restrictions in many other European countries.

He will hope his approach has been vindicated as health minister Sajid Javid said on Tuesday Britain had likely already reached the peak in both cases and hospitalisations.

"I'm cautiously optimistic that we'll be able to substantially reduce measures next week," Javid said in parliament, referring to when the so-called Plan B measures are formally due for review.

Johnson has faced criticism for his handling of the pandemic overall, and Britain has reported 152,513 deaths, the seventh highest total globally. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have followed their own anti-coronavirus measures, generally with tougher restrictions.

He will address parliament on Wednesday on next steps for Plan B and hopes to reset his agenda following furore over the lockdown gatherings at his office, which has some in his party plotting to remove him.

Johnson admitted he attended a party in the garden of his Downing Street office and residence in May 2020 while social mixing was banned.

The lifting of Plan B measures, along with Johnson's navigation of Omicron without resorting to stringent lockdown, could help him appease vocal opponents of restrictions in his own party amid the party unrest.

"Decisions on the next steps remain finely balanced," a government spokesperson said.

"The Omicron variant continues to pose a significant threat and the pandemic is not over. Infections remain high but the latest data is encouraging, with cases beginning to fall."

Javid said that a third of Britain's 15 million cases had been reported since the onset of Omicron. By contrast, Britain has reported 5% of its COVID deaths since Omicron was identified in late November.

"The idea was by really trying to put a lot of impetus on the booster programme, it would be possible ride it out without the most coercive methods," Professor Francois Balloux of University College London's Genetics Institute, told Reuters.

"In terms of morbidity and mortality, I think it could be seen as probably the right decision."

Reporting by Alistair Smout, additional reporting by Andrew MacAskill; editing by Guy Faulconbridge and Angus MacSwan

UK PM Johnson faces growing pressure to resign - REUTERS

JANUARY 19, 2022

  • Johnson faces deepening revolt by lawmakers
  • Threshold for leadership challenge could be close
  • Lockdown party revelations undermine Johnson
  • Johnson to lift COVID restrictions

LONDON, Jan 19 (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was fighting to shore up his premiership on Wednesday amid a revolt by his own lawmakers who are angry over a series of lockdown parties in Downing Street.

Propelled into the top job to "get Brexit done", Johnson in 2019 won his party's biggest majority in more than 30 years but now faces calls to resign after a series of revelations about parties in Downing Street - the prime ministers' home and office - during COVID lockdowns.

Johnson has repeatedly apologised for the parties and said that he was unaware of many of them. However, he attended what he said he thought was a work event on May 20, 2020 which revellers had been told to "bring their own booze".

To trigger a leadership challenge, 54 of the 360 Conservative MPs in parliament must write letters of no confidence to the chairman of the party's 1922 Committee.

As many as 20 Conservative lawmakers who won their seats at the last national election in 2019 plan to submit letters of no confidence in Johnson, the Telegraph reported. A handful of others have already said they had written such letters.

"Group of 2019 MPs to submit letters to try to hit threshold of 54 to trigger a contest," BBC Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg said on Twitter. "They might hit 54."

An analysis by The Times newspaper showed that 58 Conservative lawmakers had openly criticised the prime minister.

Toppling Johnson would leave the United Kingdom in limbo for months just as the West deals with the Ukraine crisis and the world's fifth largest economy grapples with the inflationary wave triggered by the COVID pandemic, with UK inflation rising to the highest level in nearly 30 years.

Leading rivals within the Conservative Party include Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, 41, and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, 46.

Johnson on Tuesday denied an accusation by his former adviser that he had lied to parliament about a lockdown party, saying nobody had warned him the "bring your own booze" gathering might contravene COVID-19 rules.

He sidestepped questions about whether he would resign if proven he misled parliament, saying only that he wanted to wait for the outcome of an internal inquiry.

Johnson will address parliament on Wednesday after his Cabinet is expected to approve plans to end the recent restrictions imposed to tackle the spread of COVID-19 in England.

Opposition leaders have accused Johnson of being a serial liar and called on him to step down.


Downing Street lockdown parties - some held when ordinary people could not bid farewell in person to dying relatives - have undermined Johnson's authority.

His own former spokeswoman resigned after she was captured laughing and joking on camera about how to cast a party if asked about it by reporters.

Such was the revelry in Downing Street at one event that staff went to a nearby supermarket to buy a suitcase of alcohol, spilled wine on carpets, and broke a swing used by the prime minister's young son.

The Mirror said staff had even bought a wine fridge for Friday gatherings, events that were regularly observed by Johnson as he walked to his apartment in the building.

Johnson has given a variety of explanations of the parties, ranging from denials that any rules were broken to expressing understanding for the public anger at apparent hypocrisy at the heart of the British state.

Opponents have called for Johnson to resign, casting him as a charlatan who demanded the British people follow some of the most onerous rules in peacetime history while his staff partied.

The latest plot was cast as the "pork pie plot" because one alleged rebel lawmaker was from Melton, the home of the Melton Mowbray pork pie. Pork pie is also London slang for a lie.


The rise of Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, often referred to as simply "Boris", to prime minister was the grandest move in a career that took him from journalism via TV show fame, comedy and scandal into the cauldron of the Brexit crisis - and then to the frontline of the coronavirus pandemic.

If lockdown parties sink that career, it would mark yet another extraordinary twist to nearly 12 years of tumultuous Conservative Party rule which has included Brexit, a referendum on Scottish independence and a quiver of elections.

A flamboyant figure known for his ambition, untidy blond hair, flowery oratory and cursory command of policy detail, Johnson's rise to power was all about Brexit.

But after securing Britain's exit from the European Union, Johnson was hit by the COVID pandemic which has killed 152,513 people in the United Kingdom. After surviving COVID in 2020, he said it nearly killed him.

Reporting by Andrew MacAskill and Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Alistair Smout

Abuja passengers kick as NCAA stops departing plane for inspection - PUNCH

JANUARY 19, 2022

BY  Okechukwu Nnodim

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority on Tuesday stopped flight VM1609 of MaxAir, to carry out a safety inspection on the airplane after it had boarded passengers and was already taxiing for take-off. It was learnt that the passengers of the flight, which was leaving the Abuja airport for Lagos, kicked against the delay caused by the move by the NCAA.

Some of the travellers reportedly complained of being stranded in the aircraft, as they alleged that the flight was stopped due to technical issues.

A passenger, who simply gave his name as Raymond, said the 11.30am flight had moved some distance on the tarmac preparatory for take-off before it was eventually turned back to the hangar and parked.

When contacted to explain what actually happened, the Station Manager for MaxAir at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, Kehinde Ogunyale, said the aircraft had to follow the rules of the aviation industry regulator-NCAA.

“It was just a delay on the flight, nothing like stranded passengers please, and it is because we were told that the NCAA wanted to do an inspection. That was it,” he told our correspondent.

Ogunyale added, “So the delay came because we were waiting for the NCAA to do the inspection. There is nothing like stranded passengers on our flight.

“The aircraft was ready to take off and they said they wanted to do an inspection on the flight. So the time spent had to do with waiting for the NCAA officials to do the inspection.

“After the inspection, the flight was meant to take off and as I am talking to you now I’ve just got information that the plane is now taxiing for take-off.”

It was learnt that the flight finally took off around 2pm after the civil aviation authority had completed the safety inspection on the aircraft.

Although the spokesperson for NCAA, Sam Adurogboye, stated that he had yet to be briefed on the MaxAir incident in Abuja when contacted, he explained that it was a standard practice to inspect an aircraft, especially whenever a pilot raised a concern.

“The pilot might have noticed an issue and might have called the NCAA to inspect the plane. So it is a standard practice to carry out such inspection before clearing the aircraft for takeoff,” he stated.

Tackling Unending Brain Drain In Nigeria - DAILY TRUST

JANUARY 20, 2022

The quest for greener pastures by skilled professionals and individuals both young and old who have received advanced training in Nigeria has never been as alarming as we now have. Nigeria, just like other African countries have over the years been robbed of her best brains. These individuals move to developed countries like THE USA, UK, Canada, Saudi Arabia and use the basic and advanced knowledge they have benefitted from Nigeria to contribute to the host country.

This current trend has been attributed to some causes, which include; unsolved security challenges in Nigeria. The daily rise in the level of killing and constant destruction of properties of Nigerians with no sincere approach by the government in tackling this menace are seen as the main causes.

Wage differential between Nigeria and receiving countries is so large that even increase in wages cannot affect migration to developed countries. Apart from wages, the working conditions are quite different. Work tools are fully provided for with advanced technology especially in the health sector, which explains the massive brain drain in our health sector. Unemployment and underemployment of Nigerian graduates is quite distasteful as many people see university education as a waste of time and resources since there are little or no jobs available. Young graduates have been subjected to being nursery school teachers with some receiving less than N15,000, which is less than 31 dollars as salary per month. While some others go back to become business apprentices after graduation.

Unstable and inconsistent government policies, which is usually based on sentiments without consideration to how it will affect local businesses. An example of this was the Twitter ban in Nigeria. A lot of young entrepreneurs who have their business platform on Twitter App have suffered huge financial losses and setbacks. Instability of the foreign exchange rates and continual dwindling of naira before against other currencies especially the dollar. This has affected the cost of living and skyrocketed the prices of items especially foodstuffs in the past two years. The superiority of these foreign currencies over naira entices one to acquire them to gain an economic edge. Direct and indirect beautiful reports of our people who are now working overseas to their relatives or through social media handles, which convey evidence of conducive work environments and good standard of living is another cause of brain drain in our nation.

This brain drain or personnel mobility has its own effects on our nation. It has resulted in the high rate of turnover in organisation as employees simply stay on the job for a few months in order to raise money to process their visas and travel tickets. This simply put so much pressure on the remaining workforce as more job descriptions are added to their already cumbersome job. Also, Nigerian-based businesses are collapsing on a daily basis as competent employees relocate. The cost of recruitment, onboarding, learning and development of new employees plus the time wasted while the new employee masters’ operation process of the business affects the revenue of the organisation. Although, one can argue that brain drain has a positive impact like remittances made by people abroad to their families here in Nigeria. But this cannot be fully captured well in the nation’s economy because there is no proper structured way for it to reflect in the nation’s GDP.

How then do we make Nigeria conducive and reduce the brain drain and labour mobility to developed countries? The security of lives and properties should top the priority list of the government. There should be a sincere and holistic approach to tackle the insecurity and bring to an end this menace.

Financial and economic policies should be taken with due consideration to the impact they will have on the populace and local businesses. A well-researched and widely consulted policy will also definitely attract foreign investments. Work environment should be well-equipped with up-to-date technological tools especially in government owned institutions like hospitals and medical centres. This will bring efficiency in service delivery and reduce medical tourism. Salaries should be made competitive and be paid as at when due. Government should provide higher education scholarship for indigent students, which is one of the attractions to developed countries. Academic research and development should be funded appropriately and given due attention. Nigeria should partner with indigenes who are currently in key job roles abroad and agree on brain sharing in order to develop the nation.

In conclusion, if a nation that bores the cost of providing basic and advanced training and education opportunities can as well provide career advancement and employment, the migration flow will definitely be reduced. Nevertheless, failure of the government and all actors in the economic system to address these issues, in ten years from now, Nigeria will just be a training ground and we will end up losing our vibrant youths to other nations as we saw in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games where athletes with Nigerian names represented other nations and won medals for their host countries which could have been ours.

Nigeria passengers face hitches as airlines suspend US flights over 5G rollout - PUNCH

JANUARY 20, 2022

BY  Oyetunji Abioye, Edidiong Ikpoto with agency reports

United States-bound passengers departing Nigeria are likely to face connection delays in Europe, Middle East and other major hubs’ airport as major airlines cancelled and rescheduled their flights to the United over 5G rollout in the US on Wednesday.

Major international airlines announced suspension and modification of flights to the US amid uncertainty about potential interference between new 5G cell phone services and critical airplane technologies, according to a CNN report.

Emirates, Air India, All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines, Lufthansa and British Airways all announced changes to some flights, citing the 5G issue.

Emirates said it would suspend flights into nine US airports: Boston, Chicago O’Hare, Dallas Fort Worth, George Bush Intercontinental in Houston, Miami, Newark, Orlando, San Francisco and Seattle. It said it would continue flying into New York’s John F. Kennedy airport, Los Angeles International and Washington Dulles.

“We are working closely with aircraft manufacturers and the relevant authorities to alleviate operational concerns, and we hope to resume our US services as soon as possible,” Emirates said in its statement.

Germany’s Lufthansa canceled a flight between Frankfurt and Miami. It said it would swap Boeing 747-8 aircraft for 747-400s on flights from Frankfurt to Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco.

A spokesperson for British Airways told CNN Business that it “had to make a handful of cancellations” because a decision by telecom operators to delay activating the new 5G service at some locations didn’t cover all the airports the airline serves.

Other carriers including Virgin Atlantic and Air France-KLM said they had not canceled any flights but were monitoring the situation.

Delta Air Lines said it was planning for the possibility of weather-related cancellations as early as Wednesday due to the new 5G service in the vicinity of dozens of US airports.

According to airport and airline sources in Nigeria, the development is likely to affect US-bound Nigeria passengers departing the country in coming days.

While Delta Airlines and United Airlines, which fly directly from Nigeria to US, were yet to announce any changes to their flights as of Wednesday, travel agency and airport officials said travellers heading to the US through the Middle East and Europe would likely face some delays with their connection flights.

Also, a BA official in Nigeria said Lagos-London and Abuja-London flights would operate on schedule but noted that US-bound passengers who might be affected by any potential delays in London would be contacted by the airline.

A significant number of Nigerians travel to US through Europe, Middle East and other Africa countries flying carriers from the continents.

Local travel experts said more delays and cancellations are expected in coming days as the US announces fresh development around the 5G rollout.

A statement quoted a BA spokesperson as saying, “We’ve been working closely with airlines across the world to call for a solution, and last night the US wireless networks agreed to scale back plans for their 5G networks near key airports.

“There’s still some uncertainty, and we’ve had to make a small number of cancellations. But, we’ve added some additional resilience to our schedule by proactively planning aircraft changes wherever possible and we’re offering alternative options to affected customers, who have been contacted.

“We’ll share more information as soon as we get more updates. Customers are reminded to add their contact details to bookings so they get updates.”

US transportation regulators had already been concerned that the version of 5G that was scheduled to be switched on could interfere with some airplane instruments, and many aviation industry groups shared those fears — despite reassurances from federal telecom regulators and wireless carriers.

Specifically, the US Federal Aviation Administration has been worried that 5G cellular antennas near some airports — not air travelers’ mobile devices — could throw off readings from some aircraft equipment designed to tell pilots how far they are from the ground. Those systems, known as radar altimeters, are used throughout a flight and are considered critical equipment.

In December, the FAA issued an urgent order forbidding pilots from using the potentially affected altimeters around airports where low-visibility conditions would otherwise require them. That new rule could keep planes from getting to some airports in certain circumstances, because pilots would be unable to land using instruments alone.

Irate Passengers Storm Azman Office In Kano Over Flight Cancellation - DAILY TRUST

JANUARY 20, 2022

Several angry passengers of Azman Air stormed the office of the airline in Kano after the cancellation of the 7 am flight to Lagos on Monday.

It was gathered that the airline only informed the passengers of the cancellation of the flight via an e-mail a few minutes before the scheduled departure.

Some of the passengers said they had international flights to board in Lagos and were furious as to why Azman sent them a cancellation message just a few minutes to schedule departure.

Most of them said they were travelling to Lagos for a connecting flight to London, Egypt, Dubai, Ghana, and other destinations for medical reasons.

The passengers later mobilised themselves from the Malam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) and stormed the airline’s office at Zaria Road in protest of the unsavoury development.

Reacting to the development, the General Manager, AZMAN Air services Suleiman Lawan said: “Actually, what happened with the flight of today is as a result of a technical snap on the flight. We believe in safety so we have to rectify the problem.

“We slept at the airport yesterday hoping to get it fixed before morning and it was a little late for the passengers to have the information which some got, some did not.”

He added that those who asked for a refund have been given back their money with an apology while others were rescheduled for another flight.

Lagos Acquires 2 High Speed Trains For Red Line Rail - DAILY TRUST

JANUARY 20, 2022

By Christiana T. Alabi

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has acquired two sets of 10 cars Talgo 330kmph speed trains from a Spanish train manufacturer, Talgo in the United States for the red line rail project.

At the event inside the Milwaukee Facility of Talgo in the US, Governor Sanwo-Olu said the State Government was excited to complete the purchase of the two brand new trains.  

“We hope that the purchase of the trains will be the beginning of a mutually beneficial business relationship. Providing a source of livelihood for our citizens is all about providing jobs for our people and that is what we are doing.

“It is about ensuring that we can build our economy; people can move from one location to another and businesses can grow,” said Sanwo-Olu.

It will have 11 stations and will be the first operational metro system in West Africa.

Acting Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson said: “I am sending my congratulations to the Governor of Lagos State in Nigeria, but also a little disappointed that we missed out on the opportunity to have those train sets operating here in Milwaukee and in Wisconsin.”

CEO and President, Talgo USA, Antonio Perez, said, “For us, it is important that our trains are utilised. It doesn’t do any good for the trains that we built to be stored and kept without passengers riding them.”

National carrier: Uganda leads, emerges world youngest fleet operator - THE GUARDIAN

JANUARY 21, 2022

By Wole Oyebade

Nigeria and Uganda both set out to revive their defunct national airlines in 2018. About four years into the race, Uganda Airlines has gained altitude with a fleet now ranked as the youngest by any airline globally in 2022.

Uganda Airlines, apparently showing the Nigerian authorities how to do it, started small with brand new six aircraft.

Nigeria is scheduled to roll out ‘Nigeria Air’ in the first quarter of 2022, with two borrowed aircraft. In four years of testing the waters, the project has nothing on ground yet.

Without the pandemic alibi, ch-aviation’s database showed that Uganda Airlines has paraded the world’s youngest fleet for the second year on the bounce.

The airlines’ small fleet comprises four Bombardier CRJ900s aged from 2.29 to 2.75 years old. These are joined by a pair of rare Airbus A330-800neos, aged 1.13 and 1.17 years old.

Other top five youngest fleets cited by ch-aviation are Chilean SKY Airline, Salam Air in Oman, Viva Air in Colombia and Saudi Arabian Flyadeal.

Flying a young fleet is a plus for any operator. Younger aircraft typically use less fuel and thus, give off fewer emissions while being cheaper to run. From a passenger’s point of view, the cabin will usually be less worn, while comfort may be increased compared to older aircraft.

Like Nigeria Airways, old Uganda Airlines bit the dust in 2001 after years of aerial woes. The Ugandan government decided to have another go at the national carrier in 2018 and by August 2019, the airline returned to the sky.

The Ugandan Cabinet was clear-headed and with good grip on what to do. Wide consultation and studies recommended the government’s equity investment of approximately $70 million and loans totalling $330 million borrowed from regional lenders. Endorsed too were the six new aircraft, two of which will be the wide-body, long-range A330-800 and the other four being CRJ900 aircraft, to service both local and regional operations.

A review of the timelines showed that in May 2018, the airline placed orders and made part-payment for six new air planes. March 2019, all 24 Ugandan cockpit crew had been trained and certified. In April 2019, the first Bombardier CRJ900 arrived. April to July 27, 2019, the Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) was processed and awarded by the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority.

On the morning of 28 August 2019, Uganda Airlines had its first commercial flight. Effective March 2021, Uganda Airlines entered into an interline agreement with Emirates Airlines.

Behind Uganda, according to ch-aviation, Chile’s SKY Airline has the youngest fleet in South America and the second-youngest fleet globally. While the airline was founded 20 years ago in 2002, it doesn’t have any aircraft left from the early days.

Today, it operates a fleet of 24 aircraft. Like all the other airlines so far, SKY only operates the Airbus A320 family. The airline has 21 A320neos and a further three A321neos. Of these, the oldest is a 3.37-year-old A320neo.

Oman’s Salam Air claims the crown as operating the youngest fleet in Asia, a title which means it has the world’s third-youngest fleet. Salam Air has a relatively small fleet of aircraft with just seven jets, all of which come from Airbus’ neo family of aircraft. Alongside one A321neos, the airline also has six A320neos, the oldest of which is 5.29 years old.

Colombia’s Viva Air has the second-youngest fleet in South America and the fourth-youngest fleet overall. Like flyadeal, the airline exclusively operates A320s, both ceos, and neos. Of its 19 aircraft, Viva’s oldest plane is a 12.75-year-old Airbus A320ceo registered HK-5221. The airline’s next oldest plane is 3.29 years old, suggesting it may well rank higher in the top five if HK-5221 didn’t drag it down.

According to ch-aviation’s data, Saudi Arabian airline flyadeal has the world’s fifth-youngest fleet. The airline’s 16 aircraft have an average fleet age of just 2.76 years, giving some idea how high the bar is set to make the top five. The airline’s oldest aircraft is an Airbus A320ceo aged just 4.43 years.

Ireland Set to Lift Most Pandemic Curb in Surprise Move - BLOOMBERG

JANUARY 21, 2022

(Bloomberg) -- Ireland is reportedly set to drop most pandemic restrictions, as concerns surrounding the omicron variant ease.

Government medical advisers proposed removing most curbs, including early closing times for bars and restaurants and the need for vaccine passes to access many indoor facilities such as gyms, local media including state broadcaster RTE reported. Mask wearing, passes for international travel and self isolation for symptomatic people are likely to be the only rules that will remain in place. 

Irish Prime Minister Micheal Martin will announce the plan in a national address later today.

The government shut nightclubs and imposed a closing time of 8 p.m on hospitality last month as the omicron variant emerged. Those measures had been set to stay in place until the end of January but are now likely to be dropped before then. Workers will be asked to return to offices on a phased basis, while restrictions on capacity levels at outdoor events will also be dropped. 


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