Brazil: Truckers promise national strike and claim betrayed by Bolsonaro

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF BRAZIL’S 247 NEWS)

 

Truckers promise national strike and claim betrayed by Bolsonaro

“The government has not fulfilled anything it promised. The price of diesel fuel had 11 consecutive highs in 2019. We can no longer be fooled by Mr. Jair Messias Bolsonaro, who protects agribusiness and says the truck driver only knows how to destroy highways, ”says autonomous trucker leader Marconi France.

(Photo: Reuters)
 

247 – “Leader of the autonomous truck drivers, Marconi França said, this Friday (6/12) that, at 0h of next Monday (16), at least 70% of the 4.5 million autonomous professionals and celetistas will stop all over the country. The reason is the dissatisfaction of the category with the government of Jair Bolsonaro, which, according to France, did not fulfill what promised to the workers, “reports a report published in Correio Braziliense.

“The government has not fulfilled anything it promised. The price of diesel fuel had 11 consecutive highs in 2019. We can no longer be fooled by Mr. Jair Messias Bolsonaro, who protects agribusiness and says that the truck driver only knows how to destroy highways, ”complained France to the newspaper.

The truck driver also asks for the support of the population. “Of all who use gasoline, diesel oil and also cooking gas. Jair Bolsonaro forgets that we transport the products of industries and agribusiness, ”he said.

Woman and 2 kids in SUV die after collision with Amtrak train in Florida

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE USA TODAY NEWS)

 

Woman and 2 kids in SUV die after collision with Amtrak train in Florida

John Pacenti, Jodie Wagner and Julius Whigham II
Palm Beach Post

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A woman and two children, apparently heading camping, died Saturday when their SUV was struck by an Amtrak train at the entrance of the Corbett Wildlife Management Area in suburban Jupiter.

The victims were identified by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office on Sunday morning as Valery Jo Rintamaki, 58, of West Palm Beach, and Trystan Prestano, 10, and Skylar Prestano, 8, of Wellington.

The railroad crossing had no gate and the tracks were just about 25 yards from the turn off Beeline Highway. There was a yield sign and two railroad markers but a driver entering Corbett was shielded from oncoming trains by brush.

Photos from the scene: Train collides with SUV in Florida

Rintamaki, driving a Subaru Outback, was traveling west on North Grade Road after turning left from Beeline Highway, and then slowed as she began crossing the railroad tracks, the sheriff’s office said. She failed to yield for the westbound train, which collided with the left side of the SUV.

Camping gear was strewn at the site of the collision along with the Subaru’s bumpers.

The northbound Amtrak train was carrying 200 passengers with a final destination of New York City. The impact of the crash pushed the SUV about a half mile before it came to rest, a mass of twisted wreckage.

“It sounded like a shotgun going off,” said Earl Megonigal, a check station operator at the wildlife management area. “Then we heard the train stopping and ran up there and saw all the car parts.”

Palm Beach County Fire Rescue said crews responded at about 2 p.m. to the scene at the 18000 block of Beeline Highway. There were no reports of injuries to any of the Amtrak’s passengers and crew, Capt. Albert Borroto, spokesman for Palm Beach Fire Rescue said.

Fire Rescue called in a special operations unit to extract one of the deceased from the Subaru and crews began removing the vehicle shortly before 7 p.m.

After the car was detached from the front of the train, crews were seen making repairs with a welding torch in preparation for the train to continue its trip.

The Amtrak’s passenger cars were lit up, silhouetting the train against the swampland as all passengers remained aboard. According to a tweet from Amtrak, the train was back on the move shortly after 8 p.m. and “operating approximately 6 hours late.”

Amtrak said in a statement that Train 92 was traveling from Miami to New York when it made contact with a vehicle on the tracks. There were no reported injuries to the 200 passengers or crew, said Amtrak spokeswoman Christina Leeds.

Megonigal said that previous crashes involving trains at the Corbett crossing have prompted calls for improved safety measures.

“Everybody has been saying for years we need some sort of crossing gate,” he said.” It’s dangerous there. Trains come flying by. ”

Why the Tesla Cybertruck Looks So Weird

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF WIRED MAGAZINE)

 

If Raphael Zammit is being perfectly honest, his first reaction when someone texted him a photo of Tesla’s new Cybertruck was horror. “I was like, ‘Oh my goodness! What did Tesla do?’” he says. “What did they do?”

Zammit isn’t just a neutral observer. He heads the MFA Transportation Design program at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, and has been involved in automotive design for a quarter century. And to him, the Cybertruck is “extreme.”

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“It literally breaks every rule we tell to our students,” Zammit says. “It’s what we tell them not to do.” No, this is not a truck built for truck designers.

For example: See the top of the vehicle up there, and how thin it is? See the truck’s fine, narrow D-pillar, the slanted back stand that supports the roof? Based on all the triangles involved, there’s no reason to believe that the top of the truck is weak. But the thinness makes it appear to be. Zammit says he and other automotive designers teach students to add a little extra something to make the vehicle look stable, to look strong—even if it doesn’t add much to the engineering.

Yep, this is a vehicle design without compromises. That might be why the initial reaction to the truck, seemingly built to haul carcasses in a postapocalyptic videogame, was a collective “wut.” Those design choices also diverge dramatically from the other products in Tesla’s decade-long existence. Even its Semi, unveiled two years ago and meant to start rolling off production lines next year, is made of elegant, swooping lines.

interior of Tesla Truck
The interior of the Cybertruck Tesla unveiled Thursday.

PHOTOGRAPH: TESLA

With the Cybertruck (or CYBRTRCK, as Musk styles it), all that refinement goes out the slightly spider-webbed window. “Other car companies keep their form language very consistent for 100 years,” says Lee Walton, a vehicle designer who teaches at Finland’s Lahti University of Applied Sciences. “To completely change the form language at this point in [Tesla’s] history is very, very unusual.”

Here’s another reason the Cybertruck may seem strange: It doesn’t look like it has all of the necessary elements to make it road-ready. The model shown onstage on Thursday night didn’t have side mirrors, which are required in the US (though the federal government is considering changing the rule). Its headlights, a strip of illumination, wouldn’t be street legal. Automotive engineering experts say they’re also worried about the lack of a visible “crumple zone,” built to collapse and absorb the brunt of the force in a forward collision. Tesla did not respond to questions about whether the truck’s design would change before it goes into production in 2021.

For these reasons, the Cybertruck feels more like a concept car, says Walton, and “a really interesting one.” Other carmakers produce “concepts all the time, but then they don’t list them on their website with a ‘buy now’ button.” Yes, you can reserve your Cybertruck right now for $100.

And yet: Zammit, the auto design instructor, thinks the Cybertruck just might be brilliant. His horror turned to a kind of admiration when he heard about the price: $39,900 for the base model, and $49,900 for the dual-motor all-wheel-drive version with 300-plus mile range.

Zammit realized then that the truck’s DeLorean-mated-with-a-Pontiac-Aztek aesthetic might be an effort to streamline the manufacturing process. “By being philosophically so pure and so functional, Tesla has completely eliminated a very large part of what is the traditional automotive assembly,” he says. The company might cut down on expensive tool and die costs by keeping all elements of the car flat, straight, and, frankly, a little weird looking. “Musk might be pulling off one of the most brilliant moves in automotive history,” he says.

Still, someone has to buy the thing to make it successful, and the departure from the usual Tesla brand is confusing. Musk and company have positioned themselves as a bulwark against globe-wracking climate change. But this truck doesn’t look hopeful. Tom Matano, who teaches industrial design at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, calls the whole thing “anti-humanistic” (though notes he’d like to see the truck on the road before he can really judge it.) Blade Runner, which Musk has said helped inspire his newest creation, is about lab-grown humanoids created to be slaves.

The Cybertruck says, “Pack up your blasters, honey—let’s get the hell out of here.” Maybe that’s the genius, though, to make a truck for the sort of people who might not think of Tesla otherwise. Does that person exist? At the very least, says Walton, “I really admire the balls.”

Vietnamese police accelerate illegal immigration probe following lorry deaths in Britain

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF SHANGHAI CHINA’S ‘SHINE’ NEWS NETWORK)

 

Vietnamese police accelerate illegal immigration probe following lorry deaths in Britain

Xinhua
Vietnamese police accelerate illegal immigration probe following lorry deaths in Britain

AFP

Bui Phan Chinh, father of 37-year-old of Bui Phan Thang who is feared to be among the 39 people found dead in a truck in Britain, sits outside his house in Hong Linh district of Vietnam’s Ha Tinh province on October 29, 2019.

Police of Vietnam’s central Ha Tinh province have detained two individuals following reports of local families seeking for their missing relatives in Britain.

The provincial police have instituted legal proceedings against one among them for organizing, brokering illegal immigration and residence in foreign countries, Vietnam News Agency reported on Friday, quoting deputy head of Ha Tinh police Nguyen Tien Nam as saying.

Local police are also collecting testimony from others related to the case, Nam said, adding that they are working with the Ministry of Public Security and police of other localities to further investigate the case.

The investigation, which was officially announced on Thursday, follows reports of 10 families in the province who lost contact with their relatives on the way to Britain after the Essex lorry incident.

Ha Tinh authorities have collected DNA samples from members of those families to send to Britain for victim identification.

On Thursday, police of Vietnam’s central Thua Thien Hue province also pressed criminal charges and instituted legal proceedings against three Vietnamese individuals for organizing and brokering illegal immigration, Vietnam News Agency reported.

A resident from the province was duped into paying the trio over 36,000 U.S. dollars to immigrate to the United States.

Earlier on October 26, police of central Nghe An province filed the same charges against four people, who between 2015 and 2019 received hundreds of thousands dollars from more than 400 people without sending anyone abroad, local online newspaper VnExpress cited Nghe An police as reporting.

Pakistan: 73 People Die From Fire On Train

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE BUSINESS INSIDER)

 

Seventy-three people have died after a moving train in Pakistan caught fire when two stoves being used by passengers to cook food exploded, a senior Pakistani railway official, who asked not to be named, told Business Insider.

Pakistani officials first reported the fire at 9:50 a.m. on Thursday, according to the Associated Press.

The train is known as the Tezgam train and was traveling from the city of Karachi across the country to Rawalpindi.

A further 47 people were injured as three of the train’s carriages caught fire when it was approaching the town of Liaquatpur in Punjab, the official added.

Pakistan Train Fire
A map showing the route of the train and the location where the fire broke out. 
Google Maps.

Pakistan’s minister for railways, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, said the fire started from a gas cylinder that was used by the passengers to cook breakfast, according to the BBC.

“Two cooking stoves blew up. They were cooking, they had [cooking] oil, which added fuel to fire,” Ahmed said, according to the BBC.

Survivors reported it took the train over 20 minutes to stop after the fire broke out, and some pulled emergency cords and ran to notify the conductor farther down the train, according to the Associated Press.

According to several local news reports, many of the victims jumped to their death as the train was still moving.

Video footage from AFP shows the scorched remains of the carriages that caught fire. Rescue teams can be seen on the scene:

The Pakistani Army dispatched doctors and paramedics to assist with rescue missions and sent helicopters to the scene of the incident to evacuate the critically injured, according to the local news site The Express Tribune.

President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan offered their condolences to the victims of the train fire.

Khan said an immediate inquiry had been ordered “to be completed on an urgent basis” on the incident.

Imran Khan

@ImranKhanPTI

Deeply saddened by the terrible tragedy of the Tezgam train. My condolences go to the victims’ families & prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured. I have ordered an immediate inquiry to be completed on an urgent basis.

8,388 people are talking about this

According to the BBC, many of the passengers were traveling to the city of Raiwind to attend a major religious festival hosted by the Tablighi Jamaat, a Sunni Muslim missionary movement.

China completes world’s longest cross-sea road-rail bridge

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF SHANGHAI CHINA’S ‘SHINE’ NEWS NETWORK)

 

China completes world’s longest cross-sea road-rail bridge

Xinhua
China completes world's longest cross-sea road-rail bridge

Xinhua

An aerial photo taken on September 21 shows the construction site of the Pingtan Strait Road-rail Bridge in China’s southeastern Fujian Province.

China on Wednesday completed the main structure of the world’s longest cross-sea road-rail bridge in its southeastern province of Fujian.

The last steel truss girder, weighing 473 tonnes, was bolted on the Pingtan Strait Road-rail Bridge, another mega project in China, on Wednesday morning.

Hundreds of bridge builders clad in orange overalls, as well as government officials, hailed the completion on the bridge deck, with several rounds of fireworks being set off to celebrate the moment.

With a staggering span of 16.34 km, the bridge connects Pingtan Island and four nearby islets to the mainland of Fujian Province.

The bridge, which is expected to open to traffic next year, can help shorten travel time from two hours to half an hour between Fuzhou, capital city of Fujian Province and Pingtan, a pilot zone set up to facilitate trade and cultural exchanges across the Taiwan Strait.

“Of all the bridges being built across the world, this is no doubt the most challenging,” said Wang Donghui, chief engineer of the project, adding that it is China’s first and the world’s longest cross-sea road-rail bridge.

The project has attracted worldwide attention from the start of construction in 2013 as it spans an area off the coast of southeast China long seen as a “no-go zone” for bridge-building.

The region has strong gales and high waves for most of the year and is known as one of the world’s three most perilous seas along with Bermuda and the Cape of Good Hope.

Workers had to battle the notoriously strong winds, choppy waters and rugged seabed in the region to drill 1,895 piles into the ocean.

More than mega project

The road-rail bridge has a six-lane highway on the top and a high-speed railway at the bottom, which is designed to support bullet trains traveling as fast as 200 km per hour. It is a part of the 88-km Fuzhou-Pingtan railway.

In the past, Pingtan was a backwater island of humble fisheries. It did not even have a bridge connecting it to the mainland until 2010 when the Strait Bridge began operating for cars only.

In 2010, China established the Pingtan Comprehensive Pilot Zone to facilitate cross-Strait exchange and cooperation, ramping up its efforts to improve the island’s infrastructure.

Today, skyscrapers are popping up all along the shoreline, with the glow of construction work filling the night sky. Meanwhile, thousands of Taiwan residents swarm into the booming island to live and start businesses.

The island has accommodated more than 1,000 shops and companies set up by Taiwan residents, according to government statistics.

Chen Chien-hsiang, a 29-year-old man who moved from Taiwan to Pingtan two years ago, believes that the new bridge will help attract more businesses to the island and further boost its economic development.

“The new bridge means more than a mere mega project,” Chen said. “It also promises a brighter future for people from Taiwan who chose to live and work here.”

Infrastructure maniac

Huang Zhiwei, 22, found himself making history by lifting the last piece of the bridge girder from a ship about 80 meters below the bridge deck, an undertaking that he had never expected when he joined the project a year ago as an intern.

His parents, unhappy about their son’s career choice, felt relieved after several video chats during which their son showed them his working and living conditions at the construction site.

“With so many advanced technologies and safety measures, I am convinced that we will accomplish the mission, and I am very proud of my contribution,” said the young operator.

More than 1.24 million tonnes of steel have been used for the bridge, enough to build 190 Eiffel Towers, and 2.97 million cubic meters of cement, nine times the amount of cement used to build the Burj Khalifa towers in Dubai, the world’s tallest skyscraper.

“We could not possibly have realized the construction 15 years ago for lack of advanced construction technologies and equipment such as the drilling machine and ship cranes we have developed today,” said Xiao Shibo, an engineer of the China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group Co., Ltd. The bridge has made history in many aspects, Xiao added.

China is dubbed as an “infrastructure maniac” for countless dazzling megaprojects, with the Chinese builders breaking their own world records.

China is home to the world’s highest bridge, longest cross-sea bridge and 90 out of the 100 highest bridges built this century.

From 2015 to 2020, China’s transportation investment is expected to exceed 15 trillion yuan (US$2.1 trillion), with a substantial portion reserved for bridge construction.

4 Longest Roads in the U.S.

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

4 Longest Roads in the U.S.

If you love cruising the open road with your car or motorcycle on adventurous road trips, you need to travel the longest roads in the United States. You don’t have to worry about exits, except to find some great places to eat, rest, and soak up local flare. The best part about traveling on one of the longest roads is you don’t have to worry about your navigation system kicking in and interrupting you while you rock out to your favorite music or listen to an inspiring podcast. Here are the four longest roads in the U.S., so you can plan your next exciting road trip:

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U.S. Route 30, New Jersey to Oregon

U.S. Route 30, New Jersey to Oregon

Credit: peeterv/iStock

The nation’s fourth longest road and third longest U.S. highway spans 3,072 miles starting in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and ending in Astoria, Oregon. In addition to Oregon and New Jersey, U.S. 30 runs through nine more states, giving you plenty of exciting rest stops. One of the most gorgeous stretches of U.S. 30 is the Thousand Springs Scenic Byway, which runs through Idaho from Bliss through Twin Falls. This part of U.S. 30 meanders through the Snake River Canyon where you will find thousands of waterfalls, hot springs, and charming Idaho towns.

For more small towns and some historic immersion, you will find several worthwhile stops on U.S. 30 through Nebraska, called the Lincoln Highway Historical Byway. As you travel this route you will drive along the Oregon, Mormon, and California trails, as well as the transcontinental Pony Express route and Union Pacific Railroad. The largest city along U.S. Route 30 is Philadelphia, where you can visit several historical sites like the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Congress Hall, The Betsy Ross House, and one of the oldest streets in the U.S., Elfreth’s Alley. If you spend some time in Philadelphia, don’t forget to enjoy a world-famous Philly cheesesteak.

Interstate 90, Massachusetts to Washington

Interstate 90, Massachusetts to Washington

Credit: 4nadia/iStock

The nation’s third longest road and longest interstate runs from Boston to Seattle and spans a little more than 3,100 miles. If you drive it from end to end, it would take you about 46 hours, but with so many must-sees and must-dos along the way, it will surely take you longer. Traveling along I-90 brings you through 13 states, including Massachusetts and Washington. If it’s an urban getaway you crave, stop off in Cleveland, Ohio, to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, or head to Chicago to visit the Navy Pier, The Art Institute of Chicago, or the Museum of Science and Industry.

If you crave a smaller town feel, spend some time in Madison, Wisconsin. Located on an isthmus formed by two lakes, this capital city offers cute pubs and restaurants in the downtown area, which is also home to the University of Wisconsin. Outdoor enthusiasts won’t miss the chance to visit Yellowstone National Park when traveling farther west on I-90. Although the park is about an hour away from Livingston, Montana, I-90 is the best route to visit the geologic wonders on its north side. As you continue to drive along I-90 through Montana, Idaho, and Washington, the scenery of the Rocky Mountains and the Cascade Mountains is so breathtaking, you won’t want your trip to end.

U.S. Route 6, Massachusetts to California

U.S. Route 6, Massachusetts to California

Credit: wakr10/iStock

In comparison to the other longest roads in the United States, U.S. Route 6 lies the furthest south, primarily because the highway runs diagonally. On the east coast, U.S. 6 begins at the tip of Cape Cod in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and goes all the way to Bishop, California. If you were to drive Route 6 from start to finish, you would visit 14 states, and it would take approximately 61 hours to travel its 3,207 miles. U.S. 6 was once the longest road in the country, but after the Department of Transportation renumbered highways during the ’60s, it moved down the list. Route 6 is formally known as the Grand Army of the Republic Highway, dedicated to the Union troops who fought during the Civil War.

Unlike the other longest roads in the United States, U.S. 6 travels primarily through medium cities, small towns, and charming rural areas. The largest urban areas you can enjoy from U.S. 6 include Denver, Des Moines, and Omaha. This gives you the opportunity to explore middle America. If you are traveling with children, make sure to spend a night or two in Sandusky, Ohio, on the shores of Lake Erie. Here you can enjoy the world-famous Cedar Point Amusement Park and ride some of the biggest rollercoasters in history.

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What is the smallest country in South America?

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U.S. Route 20

U.S. Route 20

Credit: M. Kaercher/iStock

Stretching for 3,237 miles from Boston to Newport, Oregon, U.S. Route 20 is the longest road in the United States. This beautiful route is packed with panoramic views and exciting attractions for those who love an epic road trip. It takes you through some of the nation’s must stunning national parks, such as Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Yellowstone in Wyoming, and Craters of the Moon National Monument, as it parallels I-90 for most of its length. U.S. 20 has not been converted to a four-lane highway in many areas, making this two-lane adventure the perfect opportunity to slowly meander across the United States.

On the eastern part of the route, you will find quaint and charming towns, providing a real taste of Americana with main streets that have looked the same for decades. In fact, the Massachusetts portion of Route 20 follows the old Boston Post Road used to carry mail between New York City and Boston in the 1600s and 1700s. Route 20 in New York travels through the Finger Lakes Region of the state and winds through remote areas filled with antique shops and charming bed and breakfasts. Likewise on the west coast, you will find enchanting bed and breakfasts throughout the vineyards of Oregon’s Willamette Valley.

5 Cities With the Largest Subway Systems

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

5 Cities With the Largest Subway Systems

A great subway system is a badge of honor for a city. As writers at City Metric, a website devoted to exploring topics that affect the lives of city-dwellers, discovered, there are lots of ways to measure such a system. Maybe it’s by how many people ride a specific subway in a day or year, or maybe it’s by how many stations there are around a city.

For the purposes of this article, we looked at subways with the longest routes. Here are the top five largest subway systems in the world.

Seoul, South Korea

Seoul, South Korea

Credit: Savvapanf Photo/Shutterstock.com

332 km/206 miles

More than two billion people ride the particularly high-tech subway system in Seoul each year. It’s known for its tech, including screens displaying important messages and internet access on its cars. The first line was built in the 1970’s, and today the system includes 22 lines that are still being expanded. Plus, it’s relatively cheap and known for its cleanliness, and all directional signs are written in three languages, including English.

New York City, New York, U.S.A.

New York City, New York, U.S.A.

Credit: William Perugini/Shutterstock.com

373 km/232 miles

The much older New York City subway system opened in 1904. Nearly six million people utilize the transit system every day, at about 470 stations — more than any other system in the world. Most of those stations operate 24 hours a day.

London, England

London, England

Credit: andrea flisi/Shutterstock.com

402 km/250 miles

The London Underground, sometimes called the Tube, opened in the 1860’s. Despite the name, most of the lines were built just below the surface with the “cut and cover” method, and many of the newer tracks are above ground. The system includes 11 lines and about 200 stations, and carries about five million daily passengers today.

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Beijing, China

Beijing, China

Credit: ChameleonsEye/Shutterstock.com

527 km/327 miles

With almost 11 million daily riders, this is the world’s busiest subway system. It first opened in 1969 and had only two lines for decades, before undergoing a rapid expansion in 2002. And those 11 million daily riders are expected to expand to 18 million by 2021. By then, the subway will account for 60 percent of the city’s public transit ridership.

Shanghai, China

Shanghai, China

Credit: Arwin Adityavarna/iStock

548 km/341 miles

The largest subway system in the world by route length is still expanding, with plans to add seven new lines by 2025. It’s a system that links provinces and provides inter-city transportation — or at least, it will soon. On a regular day, 10 million people use the system. The most recent expansions to the system opened in December.

5 Forgotten Airlines Everyone Used to Love

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

5 Forgotten Airlines Everyone Used to Love

Today, everyone looks for the best airline with the most reasonable price. Searches start with the main companies: United Airlines, Singapore Airlines and Lufthansa, among others. What travelers may not know, however, is that many of these popular airlines are descendants of several great airlines that came before. Here are five forgotten airlines everyone used to love.

Pan American World Airways (Pan Am)

Credit: @pan.am

Pan American World Airways (Pan Am, as it is more commonly known) is not just the title of a fictional television series starring Christina Ricci. Pan Am is one of the most adored airlines of all time. Founded in 1927, it was a pioneer in the aviation industry, bringing popularity to jumbo jets and other aircrafts when no one else in the industry was really using them yet. It was also the first airline to begin using computerized systems for flight booking and reservation management. This airline was so beloved that, after it closed up shop in 1991, the Pan Am Historical Foundation was created, and it’s entirely devoted to archiving news about Pan Am and its historical significance.

Trans World Airlines (TWA)

Credit: Markus Schmal/Shutterstock.com

Trans World Airlines (TWA) was born to carry mail in 1920’s. Under the funding of billionaire aviator Howard Hughes, which started in 1939, the airline quickly became much more than that. Deemed “the airline run by flyers,” it released sleek new airplanes (this time for carrying people, not just mail), and was one of the first airlines to receive a jumbo jet. Unfortunately, though, according to USA Today, the airline began to crumble in the ’70’s, and was forced to file for bankruptcy in the ’90’s. In 2001, it was bought out by American Airlines.

Eastern Air Lines

Credit: Markus Mainka/Shutterstock.com

Like Pan Am, Eastern Air Lines was founded in 1927. It was one of the Big Four Airlines in the 1930s, and was led by a World War I flying ace named Eddie Rickenbacker. For much of its run, it was the undisputed leader in flights between New York and Florida, so much so that it was said to hold a monopoly over this area. As time went on, though, more and more problems began to plague the airline, such as debt and labor disputes, until it went out of business in 1991. The airline was so beloved, though, that the 2000s saw many attempts to bring it back to life. The latest attempt was short lived. According to Airways Mag, the new Eastern Air Lines was forced to give up its Air Operator’s Certificate less than two years after restarting.

Cimber Air

Credit: InsectWorld/Shutterstock.com

Created in 1950, this Danish airline was extremely successful and was renowned for its great service. It has been linked with several great airlines that are still in business today, such as Lufthansa and Scandinavian Airlines. In 2008, it was large and powerful enough to absorb parts of a bankrupt airline called Sterling Airlines, but this proved to be its downfall. Just four years later it, too, had to file for bankruptcy, and the run was effectively over. There was an attempt by Scandinavian Airlines to get it going again according to The Local, but this did not pan out either.

Gandalf Airlines

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Gandalf Airlines is perhaps one of the funnest airlines to have been lost to time. This Italian airline, operated just outside of Milan, was created by Luciano Di Fazio, who just so happened to be a huge J.R.R. Tolkien fan. He so loved The Lord of the Rings that the Eye of Sauron was emblazoned on the seat covers on every flight, and the theme from The Hobbit was played in every cabin. Unfortunately, though, this airline was short-lived. It opened in 1998, but according to RunwayGirlNetwork.com, it saw a huge decrease in the cities it served starting in 2003, and went bankrupt by 2004. Perhaps one day Frodo can go on a quest to bring it back.

(Poem) Life through a Windshield

Life through a Windshield

(First published on 3-21-13)

In 81’ the story began, first with my brother and then with a friend

Seeing life through a windshield like a gypsy on eighteen wheels

But when you do this for a living it’s life you omit

White line fever they call it in movies and in song

White lines on the concrete is to what you belong

 

 

The back rows of the truck stops and the cab of a truck is your home

From Bean-town to Shaky to Big D then Windy once again you roam

Dispatch can get you a load to anywhere except the state you belong

Driving your shiny KW or Freight Shaker is not just a job now you see

Through the windshield is your life on this unending concrete sea

 

 

Back braces, Aspirin, Doan’s Pills and of course Preparation H

Always part of your luggage because that hot freight just can’t wait

Truck driving is a hobby for the homeless no roots do you need

Life through a windshield is now a life you can’t ever really leave