Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Russia probes hit video of low-flying jet over highway

Russian military prosecutors said Wednesday they would probe flight records and safety measures after a video showing a fighter jet zooming low over a highway became an Internet hit.

A spokesman for military prosecutors in the southern military district told the Interfax news agency that they had "begun a check on the organization of flights carried out and safety measures at airfields".

The YouTube video posted August 31 recorded by a camera on a car dashboard shows a jet zooming extremely low directly along a highway, which is named as one linking the southern cities of Volgograd and Rostov-on-Don.

It identified the plane as a Sukhoi 24, a supersonic military jet that dates back to the Soviet era but is still in active service in the Russian airforce.

The spokesman for military prosecutors said the check was launched after an item on the YouTube video, which had been shared virally and viewed some 300,000 times by Wednesday afternoon, was shown on Russian national television.

Channel One's most popular news show aired the video on Tuesday evening, quoting a top test pilot Anatoly Kvochur as saying that the manoeuvre was "normal training".

"The more pilots we have like this, the better," he said.

The video can be viewed via


Foothills Regional (KMRN), Morganton, North Carolina: Airport appointment an important decision

Wednesday, September 5, 2012 


By: Morganton News Herald Staff | Morganton News Herald


Burke County’s Board of Commissioners has the opportunity to make a positive change in the coming weeks.

During last week’s Foothills Regional Airport Authority meeting, the authority voted to ask the Burke County Board of Commissioners to replace one of its appointments to the authority, Randy Hullette.

Hullette has missed the last three regular and two special called meetings since the airport was raided by the FBI on June 5.

Hullette, and his businesses Hullette Aviation, Burkemont Service Center and RANMAC, were among the individuals and businesses listed in attachment to an FBI search and seizure warrant.

Burke’s commissioners need to act quickly and decisively.

The first step will be removing Hullette from the authority. Since the FBI raid, Hullette has had nothing to do with his responsibilities to the people of Burke and Caldwell counties and Foothills Regional Airport.

After removing Hullette from the authority, Burke’s commissioners will need to find not just a suitable replacement, but an outstanding one.

It’s obvious there have been serious irregularities at Foothills Regional Airport. The Federal Bureau of Investigation doesn’t show up at your doorstep with a search and seizure warrant on a hunch.

Burke’s commissioners have the chance to put someone on the authority who can help right the ship.

It is our hope that the commissioners will appoint someone who knows both aviation and business. Hullette’s replacement needs to be someone who is aware of the ins and outs of an airport and won’t be in over his or her head working with other authority members.

We also believe it would be a wise decision for the commissioners to appoint someone who has enough of a business background to ask the right questions of the hands-on leadership at the airport and those who oversee the books.

Foothills Regional Airport is an important commodity to both Burke and Caldwell counties. It would be a shame to put someone who has no experience on the authority as a political favor rather than someone who will make a positive impact with the appointment.


Tight squeeze: United Airlines to shrink coach seats


HOUSTON – Make sure your seat-belts are securely fastened, put your tray tables in the upright position and get ready for a tighter squeeze on United Airlines flights. 

 The airline is planning to retrofit 152 of its planes with slim-line seats, reducing the seat size from 18 to 17 inches.

"No, that’s not going to work at all," said Hazel Smith of Houston. "They are already too tight, you can’t move, you have backaches. You already have no leg room so I can’t imagine it smaller."

United says its passengers shouldn’t notice the change since leg room won’t be affected. They said the slim seats will allow for six more passengers on every plane.

But many say the seats are already a tight fit.

"Very uncomfortable and I was sitting up on row 10, and they still were small," Smith said. "So I can’t imagine them getting any smaller."

Huntsville resident Paul Sonnier agrees.

"Trying to use a keyboard when you are all cramped up, I don’t even use my laptop… because it’s almost impossible to do," he said.

The changes will be made sometime next year. They also plan to equip their entire fleet with Wi-Fi within the next three years.

Read more:

United Airlines cuts more 2012 flying

NEW YORK (AP) — United Airlines will reduce flying more than expected during the rest of this year because of higher fuel prices and a sluggish economy.

United will cut flying capacity by 2 to 3 percent from September through the rest of the year, Chief Financial Officer John Rainey said at an investors' conference in New York on Wednesday.

United previously expected to cut flying by 1 to 2 percent during the fourth quarter.

"We are beginning to see some modest slowness in the economic outlook and we're responding accordingly," he said.

For all of 2012, the airline now expects that flying capacity will fall 0.75 percent to 1.75 percent.

For an airline, capacity is the number of seats times the number of miles flown. So airlines can cut capacity by parking planes, using smaller planes or flying shorter distances.

Most of the big U.S. airlines have been keeping capacity flat or down as they cope with high fuel prices and a tepid economy.

United Continental Holdings Inc., based in Chicago, was formed in 2010 after the merger of United and Continental. Its shares rose 89 cents, or 4.9 percent, to $18.99 in afternoon trading.

Read more here:

Family finally finds closure at plane crash site


Up the mountain three miles beyond Waterford, Dr. Ray Cohlmia of Oklahoma City took out his cellphone Saturday afternoon and called his sister, Elsie Simon in Clinton, Okla.

"Honey, we're at the site," he told her, his voice filled with emotion. "I'm here."

"Thank God," she said, and started crying.

Cohlmia, 83, finally found closure to a family tragedy that happened just short of 67 years ago. He made the phone call from a clearing in the forest at a memorial to his brother, Petty Officer George A. Cohlmia, who died with Ensign Frank J. Campbell when their U.S. Navy dive bomber crashed on Oct. 9, 1945.

The remains of the engine are still embedded in the ground.

"It's unbelievable," he told the Bulletin. "This whole excursion is beyond words."

Cohlmia, who still practices dentistry, and nine other family members flew into Pittsburgh on Friday, and the next day were taken to the remote crash site in Ligonier Township, near what's called Sugar Camp Hill. They were led by Mike Johnson of Ligonier Township, who saw articles in the Bulletin about the family's search for the crash site, and volunteered to take them. His wife, Lynn, came along to see the memorial that Johnson often spoke of.

Read more here: