Feb 112018

A Russian passenger plane carrying 71 people on board crashed near Moscow shortly after taking off from Domodedovo airport, informs Russian news agencies.

Saratov Airlines crash

Saratov Airlines passenger plane crashed after takeoff from Moscow (pic: Twitter/Flightradar24)

The Antonov An-148, a 7 year old aircraft with registration number RA-61704, was owned by the Russian company Saratov Airlines and operating flight #6W703 bound to Orsk, an city in the Urals. According to RIA agency, there were 65 passengers and 6 crew members aboard.

The airplane plunged to the ground somewhere in the Ramenskoye district of Moscow, with all people on board likely losing their lives, writes Interfax citing an emergency services source.

“The crew and passengers had “no chance” of survival”, said the same source.

According to local media, numerous witnesses claimed that they saw the aircraft in flames before crashing in the locality of Argunovo, southeast of Moscow.

Rescue workers were unable to reach the crash site by road and had to approach on foot.

The debries from the plane were found scattered over a wide area around the site of impact.

Video: Wreckage of Saratov Airlines plane after Moscow crash

Feb 092018

A Boeing 737-800 passenger plane operated by the low-cost airline Ryanair, made a request to return to Bucharest Airport after it hit the runway with the tail during the take-off procedure, informs Aeronews.ro on social networks.

Ryanair Bucharest

Ryanair flight experiences tailstrike at Bucharest airport (pic: Aeronews.ro / Facebook)

The plane, which was heading for the Irish capital of Doublin, dumped the fuel before touching down again at Henri Coanda International Airport.

According to updated information, the aircraft in question landed safely on runway 26L of the Romanian airport.

“PAN-PAN / #Boeing 737-800 #Ryanair (EI-EBA) is now burning fuel in order to return to Bucharest. According to sources, the aircraft suffered a tailstrike at take-off and hit some lights. Currently the pilots are able to fly the aircraft and will return soon to OTP (Florin Daniel Anghel).

UPDATE / The airplane landed safely on runway 26L. A spokesperson from the airport said there seems to be no damage to the runway or lights, but they will investigate further in the morning. #FR7347 #lowcost”, Aeronews wrote on Facebook.

Jan 092018

Donald Trump’s medical visit scheduled for the end of the week will not include any psychiatric assessment, the White House announced on Tuesday as some of US president’s critics are openly questioning his mental health.

Donald Trump

Donald Trump (public domain photo)

“No”, Hogan Gidley, a spokesman for the US Executive, said on board Air Force One, adding that the President is “sharp as a tack”.

The 71-year-old US president is due to be examined on Friday at the Walter Reed Military Hospital, on the outskirts of Washington, and the results will be made public, the White House said.

During the presidential campaign, Trump published a four-paragraph letter from his doctor, in which his health fitness was presented in enthusiastic terms.

“If elected, I can unequivocally say that Donald Trump will be the healthiest individual ever elected president,” the doctor wrote at that time.

Visibly disturbed by questions about his mental abilities raised in the polemic book “Fire and Fury”, Trump tweeted over the weekend that he is a “very stable genius.”

Jan 092018

Canadian singer Abel Tesfaye, known professionally as The Weeknd, says he will never work again with H&M after the clothing retailer has been accused of racism because of an inappropriate advertisement.

HM logo

H&M retail clothing store (pic: wikimedia)

H&M representatives expressed their regrets for posting the picture of a black child wearing a hoody printed with the message “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle.” The image sparked harsh backlash and the company had to apologize and remove the advertising campaign.

The Weeknd, who had a H&M-branded clothes collection in 2017, posted a Twitter message stating that he will never collaborate again with the retailer because of that offensive image.

“Woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. i’m deeply offended and will not be working with @hm anymore…”, The Weknd tweeted.

Photo credit: Manfred Sauke [CC BY-SA 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

Jan 082018

Oprah Winfrey seems to consider the prospect of a 2020 presidential run, CNN reported.

The media outlet cited two friends, who suggested this possibility in the aftermath of Oprah’s remarkable speech at the Golden Globes Sunday night, which sparked heated debate in the blogosphere.

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey (photo by Alan Light/wikimedia)

Some sources claim that Winfrey has been considering a presidential run for several months, however she has not taken any clear decision.

A representative for Winfrey did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Many political analysts have emphasized for long that her celebrity and wealth could make her a viable Democratic Party candidate. But others expressed their doubts too: Are Americans really willing to elect a TV star as president for second consecutive time?

So far, it’s all just talk. But Oprah’s fans are delighted with the idea of her presidential run and pledged their support on Twitter and Facebook.

Jan 082018

New York’s Fire Department responded to an emergency call that a fire broke out at Trump Tower in Manhattan. After receiving the call at about 7 a.m. on Monday, the firefighters rushed to the site to put out the blaze that engulfed the top floor. Officials say the fire was small and caused by an electrical fault.

Aerial images show fire crews on the roof, with smoke emerging from one corner of the skyscraper.

There were no injuries or evacuations. The US President was in Washington at the time of the incident.

Various videos and pictures posted online, show smoke rising from the Fifth Ave. building located at East 56thSt.

Jan 082018

JFK International Airport’s baggage claim area was flooded Sunday afternoon, prompting a rapid evacuation of the area and cancellation of several flights.

aerial image jfk airport

Aerial image of John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. (public domain photo)

Water leaked inside Terminal 4, engulfing passengers’ luggage and forcing a partial evacuation of the terminal, the major arrival gate for international flights. Inbound flights to Terminal 4 were cancelled for several hours.

A pipe belonging to terminal’s sprinkler network cracked around 2 p.m. ET, pushing water into the arrivals and customs inspection zone of the terminal, CNN reports. Electricity was cut off as a safety measure. According to officials, the arrivals area and customs office should be again available to the passengers within a couple of hours.

“What happened at John F. Kennedy International Airport is unacceptable, and travelers expect and deserve better,” an airport official said, promising an investigation into the flooding.

Jan 082018

Chaos at New York’s JFK airport where thousands of passengers are stranded after hundreds of flights were canceled due to difficult weather conditions.

airport snow

Heavy snow engulfed JFK Airport (pic: independent.md)

Days after hitting the American soil, the cyclone continues to affect the largest airfields across the eastern coast of the United States. Dozens of passengers are currently waiting inside the airport hoping to get on a flight home, but for many of them, this opportunity does not seem to come soon.

Anger and frustration have grown among the people as many of them slept on the floor without even receiving much help from the authorities.

Delays were caused by heavy snow, but also by a slight collision between two aircraft. Although no one has been injured in the incident, the situation forced some passengers to wait on the planes for up to 20 hours.

Airport officials justified the delays by not having enough gates to schedule all flights cancelled during the blizzard.

Jan 082018

A video footage showing a wolf walking along a street in the Canadian city of Montreal, sparked controversial debate in the blogosphere (scroll down for video).


Wolf (pic: wikimedia commons)

Someone was driving in Montreal North, near the corner of Rue Champdoré and boulevard Saint-Michel, when they noticed what looked like a big grey dog walking around, MTL Blog reported.

Although some folks believe it was a coyote, yet the author of the footage is convinced that the animal in question was a wolf considering its size. Coyotes typically weigh between 7 and 23 kilograms while wolves weigh between 30 and 70 kilogrammes. Therefore, the animal was either a massively overfed coyote, a hybrid like some of the commentors pointed out, or a genuine wolf.

Either way, people are urged to pay careful attention when they decide to walk their pet in Montreal North area.

Is this a wolf roaming around in Montreal?

Is there a wolf in Montreal Nord.. Corner of saint michel & champdoré 😱😱

Is there a wolf in Montreal Nord (quartier St-Michel)… Corner of saint michel & champdoré
😱😱 – Thanks Mario for the video!

Posted by Everything Montreal on Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Jan 082018

Stephen K. Bannon, executive chair of Breitbart News and former White House chief strategist, issued a statement on Sunday expressing regrets for not answering earlier to comments attributed to him that were critical of Donald Trump Jr. in “Fire and Fury“, an explosive new book on President Donald Trump’s first year in office.

steve bannon

Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon (photo credit: wikimedia commons)

In the book, author Michael Wolff quotes Bannon as saying the 2016 Trump Tower meeting between Trump campaign officials, including Trump Jr. and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and a Russian lawyer purportedly offering damaging information about Hillary Clinton was “treasonous.” The book also attributes statements to him denigrating the President and his son Donald Trump Jr, CNN reports.

Hereunder is full version of Steve Bannon’s statement:

Donald Trump, Jr. is both a patriot and a good man. He has been relentless in his advocacy for his father and the agenda that has helped turn our country around.”

“My support is also unwavering for the president and his agenda — as I have shown daily in my national radio broadcasts, on the pages of Breitbart News and in speeches and appearances from Tokyo and Hong Kong to Arizona and Alabama. President Trump was the only candidate that could have taken on and defeated the Clinton apparatus. I am the only person to date to conduct a global effort to preach the message of Trump and Trumpism; and remain ready to stand in the breach for this president’s efforts to make America great again.”

“My comments about the meeting with Russian nationals came from my life experiences as a Naval officer stationed aboard a destroyer whose main mission was to hunt Soviet submarines to my time at the Pentagon during the Reagan years when our focus was the defeat of ‘the evil empire’ and to making films about Reagan’s war against the Soviets and Hillary Clinton’s involvement in selling uranium to them.”

“My comments were aimed at Paul Manafort, a seasoned campaign professional with experience and knowledge of how the Russians operate. He should have known they are duplicitous, cunning and not our friends. To reiterate, those comments were not aimed at Don Jr.”

“Everything I have to say about the ridiculous nature of the Russian ‘collusion’ investigation I said on my 60 Minutes interview. There was no collusion and the investigation is a witch hunt.”

“I regret that my delay in responding to the inaccurate reporting regarding Don Jr has diverted attention from the president’s historical accomplishments in the first year of his presidency.”

Photo credit: By Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America (Steve Bannon) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons