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The surprising reason why pilots don’t have beards

<p dir="ltr">When walking through an airport before you board a flight, it's very common to pass a pilot or two walking around the terminals. </p> <p dir="ltr">But there’s one thing you may not have noticed that unites the male pilots, and it's not just their clean cut uniforms. </p> <p dir="ltr">While trendy facial hair is very common amongst men, it seems that pilots are swapping the beards and moustaches for a more clean cut look. </p> <p dir="ltr">And there is one key reason for the sleek look: safety. </p> <p dir="ltr">It turns out sporting a beard could lead to issues with using oxygen masks, with the hair preventing a seal from forming. </p> <p dir="ltr">A study in 1987 titled <em><a href="https://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/advisory_circulars/index.cfm/go/document.information/documentid/22765">The Influence of Beards on Oxygen Mask Efficiency</a></em> outlined how facial hair could impede the efficiency of masks, with pilots still adhering to the procedure. </p> <p dir="ltr">"A Department of Navy study reported an average inboard leakage of 16 to 67 percent for military-type crew oxygen masks when tested with subjects wearing beards to altitudes of 18,000 feet," the report noted.</p> <p dir="ltr">"The data resulting from these tests indicated that decrement in performance does occur when facial hair is present along the sealing surface of crew oxygen masks."</p> <p dir="ltr">The Civil Aviation Authority in New Zealand told Stuff Travel that there are no "explicit written rules specifically addressing pilot dress codes in its regulatory framework".</p> <p dir="ltr">"The focus of the CAA rules is primarily on operational, technical, and safety requirements for aviation activities​," said a spokesperson.</p> <p dir="ltr">"However, individual airlines may have their own internal policies and standards regarding pilot dress codes. These policies ensure a professional appearance and may be part of broader company procedures and safety protocols."</p> <p dir="ltr">Air New Zealand's head of flight operations, Captain Hugh Pearce, said the airline allows moustaches and goatees, "but not full beards".</p> <p dir="ltr">"This is a safety-driven policy to ensure the best fit and most effective use of an oxygen mask if deployed, and is also recommended practice from mask manufacturers.</p> <p dir="ltr">"The safety of our customers and crew is our number one priority and it is of utmost importance that our pilots are equipped to act in the unlikely event of an emergency."</p> <p dir="ltr">Jetstar goes one step further, with goatees also getting the snip: "For safety reasons our pilots don't have beards or goatees. This is to ensure the best possible seal on quick donning oxygen masks."</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Is nuclear the answer to Australia’s climate crisis?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/reuben-finighan-157147">Reuben Finighan</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-melbourne-722">The University of Melbourne</a></em></p> <p>In Australia’s race to net zero emissions, nuclear power has surged back into the news. Opposition leader Peter Dutton <a href="https://ipa.org.au/research/climate-change-and-energy/peter-dutton-address-to-ipa-members-sydney-7-july-2023">argues</a> nuclear is “the only feasible and proven technology” for cutting emissions. Energy Minister Chris Bowen insists Mr Dutton is promoting “<a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-09-18/energy-minister-says-nuclear-power-too-expensive/102868218">the most expensive form of energy</a>”.</p> <p>Is nuclear a pragmatic and wise choice blocked by ideologues? Or is Mr Bowen right that promoting nuclear power is about as sensible as <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/listen/programs/radionational-breakfast/-unicorn-and-a-fantasy-energy-minister-slams-nuclear-energy/102866944">chasing “unicorns”</a>?</p> <p>For someone who has not kept up with developments in nuclear energy, its prospects may seem to hinge on safety. Yet by any hard-nosed accounting, the risks from modern nuclear plants are orders of magnitude lower than those of fossil fuels.</p> <p>Deep failures in design and operational incompetence caused the Chernobyl disaster. Nobody died at Three Mile Island or from Fukushima. Meanwhile, a Harvard-led study found <a href="https://seas.harvard.edu/news/2021/02/deaths-fossil-fuel-emissions-higher-previously-thought">more than one in six deaths globally</a> – around 9 million a year – are attributable to polluted air from fossil combustion.</p> <p>Two more mundane factors help to explain why nuclear power has halved as a share of global electricity production since the 1990s. They are time and money.</p> <h2>The might of Wright’s law</h2> <p>There are four arguments against investment in nuclear power: <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olkiluoto_Nuclear_Power_Plant">Olkiluoto 3</a>, <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flamanville_Nuclear_Power_Plant#Unit_3">Flamanville 3</a>, <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hinkley_Point_C_nuclear_power_station">Hinkley Point C</a>, and <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vogtle_Electric_Generating_Plant">Vogtle</a>. These are the four major latest-generation plants completed or near completion in Finland, the United States, the United Kingdom and France respectively.</p> <p>Cost overruns at these recent plants average over 300%, with more increases to come. The cost of Vogtle, for example, soared from US$14 billion to $34 billion (A$22-53 billion), Flamanville from €3.3 billion to €19 billion (A$5-31 billion), and <a href="https://illuminem.com/illuminemvoices/nuclear-economics-lessons-from-lazard-to-hinkley-point-c">Hinkley Point C</a> from £16 billion to as much as £70 billion (A$30-132 billion), including subsidies. Completion of Vogtle <a href="https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/vogtles-troubles-bring-us-nuclear-challenge-into-focus-2023-08-24/">has been delayed</a> by seven years, <a href="https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/after-18-years-europes-largest-nuclear-reactor-start-regular-output-sunday-2023-04-15/">Olkiluoto</a> by 14 years, and <a href="https://www.nucnet.org/news/decree-sets-startup-deadline-of-2024-4-3-2020">Flamanville</a> by at least 12 years.</p> <p>A fifth case is <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virgil_C._Summer_Nuclear_Generating_Station">Virgil C</a>, also in the US, for which US$9 billion (A$14 billion) was spent before cost overruns led the project to be abandoned. All three firms building these five plants – Westinghouse, EDF, and AREVA – went bankrupt or were nationalised. Consumers, companies and taxpayers <a href="https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/07/18/hinkley-points-cost-consumers-surges-50bn/">will bear the costs</a> for decades.</p> <p>By contrast, average cost overruns for wind and solar are <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/we.2069">around zero</a>, the <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2214629614000942">lowest</a> of all energy infrastructure.</p> <p><a href="https://ark-invest.com/wrights-law/">Wright’s law</a> states the more a technology is produced, the more its costs decline. Wind and especially solar power and <a href="https://ourworldindata.org/battery-price-decline">lithium-ion batteries</a> have all experienced <a href="https://www.irena.org/News/pressreleases/2023/Aug/Renewables-Competitiveness-Accelerates-Despite-Cost-Inflation">astonishing cost declines</a> over the last two decades.</p> <p>For nuclear power, though, Wright’s law has been inverted. The more capacity installed, the more costs have increased. Why? This <a href="https://www.cell.com/joule/pdf/S2542-4351(20)30458-X.pdf">2020 MIT study</a> found that safety improvements accounted for around 30% of nuclear cost increases, but the lion’s share was due to persistent flaws in management, design, and supply chains.</p> <p>In Australia, such costs and delays would ensure that we miss our emissions reduction targets. They would also mean spiralling electricity costs, as the grid waited for generation capacity that did not come. For fossil fuel firms and their political friends, this is the real attraction of nuclear – another decade or two of sales at inflated prices.</p> <h2>Comparing the cost of nuclear and renewables</h2> <p>Nevertheless, nuclear advocates tell us we have no choice: wind and solar power are intermittent power sources, and the cost of making them reliable is too high.</p> <p>But let’s compare the cost of reliably delivering a megawatt hour of electricity to the grid from nuclear versus wind and solar. According to both <a href="https://publications.csiro.au/rpr/download?pid=csiro:EP2022-5511&amp;dsid=DS1">the CSIRO</a> and respected energy market analyst <a href="https://www.lazard.com/media/typdgxmm/lazards-lcoeplus-april-2023.pdf">Lazard Ltd</a>, nuclear power has a cost of A$220 to $350 per megawatt hour produced.</p> <p>Without subsidies or state finance, the four plants cited above generally hit or exceed the high end of this range. By contrast, Australia is already building wind and solar plants at under <a href="https://reneweconomy.com.au/act-starts-to-bank-its-cheapest-wind-power-yet-in-next-stage-to-kick-out-fossil-fuels/">$45</a> and <a href="https://reneweconomy.com.au/nsw-gets-stunning-low-price-for-wind-and-solar-in-biggest-renewables-auction/">$35 per megawatt hour</a> respectively. That’s a tenth of the cost of nuclear.</p> <p>The CSIRO has <a href="https://www.csiro.au/-/media/EF/Files/GenCost/GenCost2022-23Final_27-06-2023.pdf">modelled the cost</a> of renewable energy that is firmed – meaning made reliable, mainly via batteries and other storage technologies. It found the necessary transmission lines and storage would add only $25 to $34 per megawatt hour.</p> <p>In short, a reliable megawatt hour from renewables costs around a fifth of one from a nuclear plant. We could build a renewables grid large enough to meet demand twice over, and still pay less than half the cost of nuclear.</p> <h2>The future of nuclear: small modular reactors?</h2> <p>Proponents of nuclear power pin their hopes on <a href="https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/news/what-are-small-modular-reactors-smrs#:%7E:text=Small%20modular%20reactors%20(SMRs)%20are,of%20traditional%20nuclear%20power%20reactors.">small modular reactors</a> (SMRs), which replace huge gigawatt-scale units with small units that offer the possibility of being produced at scale. This might allow nuclear to finally harness Wright’s law.</p> <p>Yet commercial SMRs are years from deployment. The US firm <a href="https://www.nuscalepower.com/en">NuScale</a>, scheduled to build two plants in Idaho by 2030, has not yet broken ground, and on-paper costs have already <a href="https://ieefa.org/resources/eye-popping-new-cost-estimates-released-nuscale-small-modular-reactor">ballooned</a> to around A$189 per megawatt hour.</p> <p>And SMRs are decades away from broad deployment. If early examples work well, in the 2030s there will be a round of early SMRs in the US and European countries that have existing nuclear skills and supply chains. If that goes well, we may see a serious rollout from the 2040s onwards.</p> <p>In these same decades, solar, wind, and storage will still be descending the Wright’s law cost curve. Last year the Morrison government was spruiking the goal of getting solar below <a href="https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/ultra-low-cost-solar-power-a-priority-for-australia-20220108-p59msj.html">$15 per megawatt hour by 2030</a>. SMRs must achieve improbable cost reductions to compete.</p> <p>Finally, SMRs may be necessary and competitive in countries with poor renewable energy resources. But Australia has the richest combined solar and wind resources in the world.</p> <h2>Should we lift the ban?</h2> <p>Given these realities, should Australia lift its ban on nuclear power? A repeal would have no practical effect on what happens in electricity markets, but it might have political effects.</p> <p>A future leader might seek short-term advantage by offering enormous subsidies for nuclear plants. The true costs would arrive years after such a leader had left office. That would be tragic for Australia. With our unmatched solar and wind resources, we have the chance to deliver among the cheapest electricity in the developed world.</p> <p>Mr Dutton may be right that the ban on nuclear is unnecessary. But in terms of getting to net zero as quickly and cheaply as possible, Mr Bowen has the relevant argument. To echo one assessment from the UK, nuclear for Australia would be “<a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2013-10-30/u-k-risks-looking-economically-insane-with-edf-nuclear-deal">economically insane</a>”.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/216891/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/reuben-finighan-157147"><em>Reuben Finighan</em></a><em>, PhD candidate at the LSE and Research Fellow at the Superpower Institute, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-melbourne-722">The University of Melbourne</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/is-nuclear-the-answer-to-australias-climate-crisis-216891">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Domestic Travel

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AFL hero stuns with choice of proposal backdrop

<p>Richmond premiership player Daniel Rioli is engaged to TikTok influencer Paris Lawrence.</p> <p>The AFL player pulled out all the stops for his proposal and even hired a helicopter to get to the picturesque setting near the peak of a snowy mountain in Queenstown, New Zealand, where he popped the question. </p> <p>“FOREVER,” he wrote on social media, with a picture of the moment he got down on one knee to propose, with the beautiful mountains in the background. </p> <p>“I can’t wait to marry the woman of my dreams.”</p> <p>His fiancée also took to social media to share the delightful news, with the caption:  “My best friend and I are getting married." </p> <p>“(I) instantly cried. Whenever I look at this particular pic I cry again.</p> <p>“In our love bubble. God I love him.”</p> <p>In one of the photos Lawrence proudly showed off her ring as the couple snuggled up to one another. </p> <p>Rioli’s teammates were quick to congratulate the couple on their engagement. </p> <p>"Congratulations that’s unreal ❤️," teammate Jayden Short wrote. </p> <p>"Congrats guys," added Noah Cumberland. </p> <p>Tayla Broad, wife of Rioli’s teammate Nathan Broad, commented: “Oh my god!!!! How gorgeous. Congrats guys ❤️ soak up all the love.” </p> <p>Fans also offered their congratulations and love for the couple. </p> <p>"Wow what wonderful news this is , congratulations Daniel on this milestone in your life," wrote one fan. </p> <p>"Congratulations you two! So happy for you both," added another. </p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

International Travel

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Dutton names future Aussie towns for nuclear power plant locations

<p>Peter Dutton has unveiled a series of locations where he wants to build nuclear power plants if he wins the next federal election. </p> <p>The leader of the opposition has pledged to build at least two nuclear plants between 2035 and 2037 if the Liberal party is elected, with another five on the list to be constructed at a later date. </p> <p>The locations include Gladstone in Queensland, the Liddell power station in the Hunter Valley of NSW, as well as Lithgow in the NSW Central Tablelands, Loy Yang in the La Trobe Valley, Victoria, Callide in Queensland, Muja in Western Australia and Port Augusta in South Australia.</p> <p>The proposal would see the nuclear power plants owned by the government under the same set up as entities such as the Snowy Hydro scheme, in a bid to focus on alternative energy solutions and remain committed to reaching net zero emissions by 2050.</p> <p>Despite Dutton's enthusiasm about the pitch, treasurer Jim Chalmers slammed the idea as “economically irrational” and “fiscally irresponsible.”</p> <p>“Peter Dutton’s nuclear negativity is economic insanity, pure and simple,’’ he said on ABC radio. </p> <p>“Nuclear takes longer, it costs more, and it will squander Australia’s unique combination of advantages. It is the worst combination of economic and ideological stupidity. </p> <p>“It is economically irrational, it is fiscally irresponsible. And it means if it’s implemented, Australia would fail that grab these vast economic and industrial opportunities with a net zero transformation in the most effective way."</p> <p><em>Image credits: DEAN LEWINS/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock Editorial/Shutterstock</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Tasmania to cover travel costs in exchange for these "odd jobs"

<p>Tasmania has just opened applications for 10 "odd jobs" that you could do in exchange for a free trip to the state. </p> <p>As part of Tourism Tasmania's latest campaign to entice winter visitors, they are offering to cover travel and accommodation costs in exchange for a few odd jobs. </p> <p>While the work is unpaid and only lasts a day or two, the chosen Aussies will also get a hire car and a hamper worth up to $500 of local Tasmania produce and memorabilia. </p> <p>One of the jobs on offer is a wombat walker at East Coast Natureworld in Bicheno.</p> <p>The wildlife park is looking for an animal and nature lover, who loves going out for walks to lead the furry animals on their morning waddles as part of their rehabilitation program. </p> <p>Another job on offer is a “paranormal investigator” who will help Tasmania’s Most Haunted in New Norfolk capture and document any disturbances, spectral figures or unexplained phenomena at Willow Court Asylum.</p> <p>They are looking for someone who is “attuned into interactions with the otherworldly” and respects the controversial history of Willow Court. </p> <p>Other jobs include a “truffle snuffler” at The Truffledore, which involves truffle hunting with a canine companion, a “wine whisperer” at Clover Hill, a “puffer nut” at West Coast Wilderness Railway and  “soaksmith” at Little Things Farm. </p> <p>They are also looking for an “oyster organiser”, a “star seeker” and “sauna stoker”. </p> <p>Anyone interested in taking these odd jobs must explain in 50 words or less why they want to swap their day job for the odd job in Tasmania. </p> <p>Applications are open from now until July 8 this year. </p> <p>The total value of the prize pool is up to $25,000. </p> <p>“More and more, we’re all looking for remedies through experience that make life feel simpler and less stressful," Tourism Tasmania chief marketing officer Lindene Cleary said. </p> <p>“Watching ‘cottagecore’ videos of people gardening and building cabins in the woods. Hobbies like cooking and reading are even trumping digital hobbies like gaming.</p> <p>"So, we extend a warm invite to Australians to apply for an odd job in Tasmania and wake up from their cool weather coma.”</p> <p><em>Images: Tourism Tasmania</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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Bird strike: what happens when a plane collides with a bird?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/doug-drury-1277871">Doug Drury</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a></em></p> <p>Late last night, Virgin Australia flight VA 148 set out from Queenstown in New Zealand bound for Melbourne. Not long after takeoff, the right engine of the Boeing 737-800 jet started <a href="https://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/virgin-australia-flight-makes-emergency-landing-after-engine-catches-fire/iquv5w1is">emitting loud bangs</a>, followed by flames.</p> <p>The pilot flew on with the remaining engine, bringing the plane’s 73 passengers and crew to a safe emergency landing at nearby Invercargill airport.</p> <p>Virgin Australia says the dramatic turn of events was caused by a “possible bird strike”. Queenstown Airport <a href="https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/aviation/bird-strike-blamed-for-fiery-virgin-australia-emergency-out-of-queenstown/news-story/9ef5c57829d0535baed223d2caf0b55f">played down</a> the likelihood of bird strike, saying “no birds were detected on the airfield at that time”.</p> <p>While we don’t know exactly what happened, bird strike is a common and real risk for aircraft. It can damage planes, and even lead to deaths.</p> <h2>How common are bird strikes?</h2> <p>A bird strike is a <a href="https://skyaviationholdings.com/bird-strikes-on-planes/">collision between</a> an aircraft and a bird. (Though the definition is sometimes expanded to include <a href="https://aawhg.org/">collisions on the ground</a> with land animals including deer, rabbits, dogs and alligators.)</p> <p>The <a href="https://digitalcommons.unl.edu/icwdm_usdanwrc/1459/">first bird strike</a> was recorded by Orville Wright in 1905, over a cornfield in Ohio.</p> <p>Now they happen every day, with some seasonal variability due to the <a href="https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/atpubs/aim_html/chap7_section_5.html">migratory patterns</a> of birds.</p> <p>Perhaps the most famous migratory bird strike occurred in 2009, when <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/US_Airways_Flight_1549">US Airways Flight 1549</a> encountered a flock of migrating Canadian geese shortly after taking off from LaGuardia Airport in New York. Both of the plane’s engines failed, and captain Sully Sullenberger was forced to pilot it to an unpowered landing in the Hudson River.</p> <p>Between 2008 and 2017, the Australian Transport Safety Board recorded <a href="https://www.atsb.gov.au/publications/2018/ar-2018-035">16,626 bird strikes</a>. In America, the Federal Aviation Administration reported <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/travel/2023/04/25/bird-strike-plane-american-airlines/">17,200 bird strikes</a> in 2022 alone.</p> <h2>Where do bird strikes happen, and what are the effects?</h2> <p>According to the <a href="https://www.icao.int/Pages/default.aspx">International Civil Aviation Organization</a>, 90% of bird strikes happen near airports. In general, this is while aircraft are taking off or landing, or flying at lower altitudes where most bird activity occurs.</p> <p>The effect of bird strike depends on many factors including the type of aircraft. Outcomes may include shutting down an engine, as may have happened with the Virgin Australia flight. This plane was a Boeing 737-800, which has the capability to fly on a single engine to an alternate airport.</p> <p>In smaller aircraft, particularly single-engine aircraft, bird strikes can be fatal. Since 1988, <a href="https://aawhg.org/#:%7E:text=The%20majority%20happen%20at%20low,billion%20in%20aircraft%20damage%20annually.">262 bird strike fatalities</a> have been reported globally, and 250 aircraft destroyed.</p> <h2>How do manufacturers and pilots defend against bird strike?</h2> <p>Most <a href="https://aawhg.org/">bird strikes</a> occur early in the morning or a sunset when birds are most active. Pilots are trained to be vigilant during these times.</p> <p>Radar can be used to <a href="https://detect-inc.com/aircraft-birdstrike-avoidance-radar/?gad_source=1&amp;gclid=Cj0KCQjwvb-zBhCmARIsAAfUI2ullN-s0MdDfzV2Hu9fLfdr8pKQCuyZWsoJfRN2W5s-tSm6Vo0wHgwaAgBMEALw_wcB">track flocks of birds</a>. However, this technology is ground-based and not available worldwide so it can’t be used everywhere.</p> <p>The two largest manufacturers of passenger jets, Boeing and Airbus, use <a href="https://aerospaceengineeringblog.com/jet-engine-design/">turbofan engines</a>. These use a series of fan blades to compress air before adding fuel and flame to get the thrust needed to take off.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/lgspIiTFWIk?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><figcaption><span class="caption">Engine manufacturers test how well they are likely to stand up to a bird strike.</span></figcaption></figure> <p>Bird strike in one of these engines can cause severe damage to the fan blades, causing the engine to fail. Engine manufacturers test the safety of these engines by firing <a href="https://www.aerospacetestinginternational.com/news/engine-testing/faa-proposes-new-engine-test-for-bird-ingestion.html">a high-speed frozen chicken</a> at them while the engine is operating at full thrust.</p> <p>The Australian Government’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority <a href="https://www.casa.gov.au/wildlife-hazard-management">circular on wildlife hazard management</a> outlines what airports should do to keep birds and animals away from the vicinity of the airport. One technique is to use small gas explosions to mimic the sound of a shotgun to deter birds from loitering near the runway. In areas with high bird populations, airports may also use certain grasses and plants that do not attract the birds.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232702/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/doug-drury-1277871"><em>Doug Drury</em></a><em>, Professor/Head of Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/bird-strike-what-happens-when-a-plane-collides-with-a-bird-232702">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Travel Trouble

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"So embarrassing": Tourist slammed for "stupid" stunt in Bali

<p>A British tourist has gone viral for all the wrong reasons after his "stupid" stunt in a Bali resort left him red-faced. </p> <p>The British traveller was believed to be staying at the 5-star Apurva Kempinski hotel in Nusa Dua, considered the island’s most luxurious location, when he came across a large decorative bowl filled with water and flower petals. </p> <p>The man was then filmed and egged on by a friend who can be heard saying "Okay now put your face in it", before he followed the instruction.</p> <p>When he went to submerge himself, he proceeded to accidentally tip over the bowl sending water and rose petals flying through the lobby of the resort, and all over himself too.</p> <p>The video, which has amassed a whopping 41 million views, was quickly subject to a wave of backlash online, with many slamming the tourist's "stupid" actions. </p> <div class="embed" style="font-size: 16px; box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; outline: currentcolor !important;"><iframe class="embedly-embed" style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border-width: 0px; border-style: none; vertical-align: baseline; width: 600px; max-width: 100%; outline: currentcolor !important;" title="tiktok embed" src="https://cdn.embedly.com/widgets/media.html?src=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tiktok.com%2Fembed%2Fv2%2F7380708475237666081&amp;display_name=tiktok&amp;url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tiktok.com%2F%40milzo09%2Fvideo%2F7380708475237666081&amp;image=https%3A%2F%2Fp16-sign-useast2a.tiktokcdn.com%2Fobj%2Ftos-useast2a-p-0037-euttp%2F9eff1d6040b74f98b167ccb18b4559ef_1718455117%3Fx-expires%3D1718924400%26x-signature%3DIcusEtP7QnSZKUZGZe5cGhO6cFg%253D&amp;key=59e3ae3acaa649a5a98672932445e203&amp;type=text%2Fhtml&amp;schema=tiktok" width="340" height="700" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></div> <p>“You come to Bali without bringing your brain? Why do you have to destroy everything in someone else’s country?” one person wrote.</p> <p>“Omg money can’t buy brains. So stupid and embarrassing.” said another.</p> <p>A third added sarcastically, “Well that’s just lovely isn’t it, so careful and respectful and cultured.”</p> <p>Despite the thousands of comments sharing their condemnation of the tourist's actions, others were quick to leap to his defence, saying it was clearly an accident. </p> <p>“I mean it’s just a bowl of water and flowers. Nothing broke it’ll be OK. Just say you’re sorry,” one person said. </p> <p>“Am I the only one who feels bad for him,” another wrote</p> <p>.Other viewers admitted they would be “mortified” if it had happened to them.</p> <p>“I would just lay on the floor like I passed out,” one joked. “I would leave the country,” another wrote.</p> <p>It’s not clear what happened afterwards but many were hopeful the tourist helped staff clean up the mess.</p> <p><em>Image credits: TikTok</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Why you should be wary of charging your phone in an airport

<p dir="ltr">While charging stations at airports can often be life-savings before boarding a flight, it turns out these handy outlets can be leaving you vulnerable. </p> <p dir="ltr">Many people have fought over a spot to charge up your devices at the last minute before embarking on a holiday, but next time you leave home with your phone or laptop needing some more juice, think again. </p> <p dir="ltr">Emily Stallings, co-founder of tech retailer <em><a href="https://www.getcasely.com/">Casely</a></em>, says that by plugging your phone into a power outlet at a public USB charging station, you're at risk of data breaches and malware infection.</p> <p dir="ltr">"If a device gets infected, it could end up leaking sensitive information or even stop working properly," she told <em><a href="https://travel.nine.com.au/latest/charging-phone-at-the-airport-danger-expert/57d141df-33ba-4a50-89e5-26f6f2a0c18d">9Travel</a></em>.</p> <p dir="ltr">These public USB ports have often been compromised by cybercriminals, who then use these unsecured ports to steal sensitive information transmitted between devices.</p> <p dir="ltr">"From personal emails to financial data, the information intercepted through these compromised ports could lead to identity theft, financial loss, and other serious consequences," explains Stallings.</p> <p dir="ltr">The best way to get around this threat, without letting your phone run out of battery, is to pack a portable charging device in your carry-on bag every time you travel.</p> <p dir="ltr">With your own cord and power bank, it's far less likely that any sneaky hackers will be able to access your device's data.</p> <p dir="ltr">Stallings says you can also enable security features such as USB Restricted Mode on your device, for those moments when you're desperate for a charger and have to rely on public ports. </p> <p dir="ltr">"This adds an extra layer of protection against potential data breaches and malware infections when charging from public USB ports."</p> <p dir="ltr">"By activating USB Restricted Mode or similar security features, you restrict data transfer over USB connections, effectively preventing unauthorised access to your device's data while charging in public spaces."</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p> </p>

Travel Tips

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Costly mistakes to avoid when travelling

<p dir="ltr">While travelling the world is an exciting and joyous way to spend your time, getting caught up in devious scams can sour even the best holiday.</p> <p dir="ltr">Whenever you hit the road, there are a few measures you can take to avoid being hit by hackers and sneaky scammers, and enjoy your holiday to the fullest. </p> <p dir="ltr">When it comes to online scams, some countries are more vulnerable than others, as NAB Executive, Group Investigations Chris Sheehan says.</p> <p dir="ltr">"Just like you'd plan visas and check the weather at your destination, it's also vital to be aware of common scams in the countries you're visiting so you can recognise the red flags and protect yourself," he said. </p> <p dir="ltr">When travelling in a new country, it’s important to be wary of accommodation or booking website impersonation scams, ticket scams for major events, as well as overcharging or wrong charge scams.</p> <p dir="ltr">"The pressure to act now is a red flag in ticket and accommodation scams, while overcharging or wrong charging scams play on distraction and a lack of detail," Chris says.</p> <p dir="ltr">"Letting your bank know where and when you're travelling can help with more accurately monitoring your transactions for suspicious activity while you're away."</p> <p dir="ltr">Another thing to be wary of when on holiday is to avoid posting your real-time location on social media, or inadvertently sharing sensitive travel documents can expose you to serious risks.</p> <p dir="ltr">Broadcasting your whereabouts can make you vulnerable to various risks, including burglary, stalking, and other personal safety threats, while criminals can take advantage of the information you share to target you or your unoccupied home.</p> <p dir="ltr">Travel expert Trevor Cooke from <a href="https://earthweb.com/">EarthWeb</a> says its best to wait until you’ve moved on until you share your location online. </p> <p dir="ltr">"If you really want to share the location of where you travelled to, wait until you're already at the next location or back home," he says.</p> <p dir="ltr">"By delaying your posts, you can still share your experiences without compromising your safety."</p> <p dir="ltr">Another thing to keep in mind when you’re next hitting the road is to be wary about unknowingly posting personal information online, such as your boarding pass. </p> <p dir="ltr">"Many people don't realise how much personal information is on your boarding pass and other temporary travel documents," says security expert Trevor.</p> <p dir="ltr">"Boarding passes, for instance, contain sensitive data such as your full name, frequent flyer number, and a barcode that can be scanned to reveal even more information. This data can be used by criminals for identity theft, unauthorised access to your accounts, and other malicious activities."</p> <p dir="ltr">"To protect yourself, always double-check that any picture you upload does not include your boarding pass, travel itinerary, hotel receipts, or any other sensitive information," Trevor adds.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p>

Travel Tips

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Travel agent arrested after allegedly selling fraudulent bookings

<p>A Sydney travel agent accused of taking the money of dozens of customers has been arrested by police. </p> <p>Footage obtained by A Current Affair showed the moment police finally caught Zahra Rachid, who is accused of ripping of customers and leaving them hundreds of thousands of dollars out of pocket. </p> <p>Officers in Sydney's south established Strike Force Bail to investigate reports of a travel agent that had allegedly failed to honour customer bookings. </p> <p>Rachid, who ran Travel World Sydney, allegedly cancelled bookings made by customers without their knowledge, and did not issue any refunds, pocketing the money for herself. </p> <p>NSW Fair Trading received complaints about Travel World Sydney totalling more than $230,000.</p> <p>Nicole Vris, claims she used Rachid as a travel agent to book a trip to Greece for herself and 34 family members. </p> <p>She thought that her dream family holiday was booked, but when she checked her flights with the airline, they had no record of her booking. </p> <p>"It's very hard to round everyone up to go on a holiday at the same time, it's so hard," Vris told <em>A Current Affair</em>. </p> <p>"Zahra has ruined that dream for many people."</p> <p>Her family has allegedly been left about $160,000 out of pocket.</p> <p>She has since paid for new flights to Greece, going with only a handful of family members who are able to afford to pay for the trip twice. </p> <p>"Your face value matters in life ... and she's definitely lost that," Vris said.</p> <p>"This was going to happen and she needs to be held accountable for her actions."</p> <p>Rachid is facing 16 fraud charges and is due in court in July. </p> <p>"I think everybody having their funds returned to them would be great and I think by Zahra being put away it might just shake her foundations a little bit," Vris said.</p> <p><em>Images: A Current Affair</em></p>

Legal

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Roadside cameras set to target more infringements

<p>Millions of Aussie drivers are being warned as authorities expand the number of infringements being targeted by roadside cameras. </p> <p>The technology, initially used to detect mobile phone use, will now target new road rules. </p> <p>"The laws were brought in and this technology was brought in as a preventative measure ... to stop people getting behind the wheel and taking risks that jeopardise the safety of others," NRMA head of media told <em>Yahoo News. </em></p> <p>"The road toll is terrible nationally in Australia ... So we need to do everything we can to reduce risks on our roads."</p> <p>In NSW authorities are expanding the capabilities of their roadside mobile-detection cameras. </p> <p>From July 1 the cameras will be able to catch drivers wearing their seatbelt incorrectly. </p> <p>This comes after Queensland reportedly became the first jurisdiction in the world to roll out seatbelt-spotting detection along with mobile-detection. </p> <p>Last year, Victoria also rolled out dual mobile phone and seatbelt detection cameras last year after a two year trial.</p> <p>No grace period will be granted when they issue the seatbelt fines. </p> <p>"The expansion of mobile phone detection cameras to also apply to seatbelt offences reinforces the NSW Government’s commitment to enforcing the 50-year-old seatbelt law, actively contributing to improving road safety and reducing fatalities on NSW roads," a statement read on their official website. </p> <p>The department told Yahoo that all images captured by roadside cameras are automatically reviewed by software. </p> <p>Those that do not contain evidence of an offence will have their images deleted within an hour. </p> <p>Drivers in the ACT will need to make sure they have proper insurance and registration.</p> <p>From August, the roadside cameras alongside speed cameras and red light cameras will be used to send hefty fines to those driving without proper registration or insurance. </p> <p>Those caught by the cameras will have their paperwork manually checked by transport staff. </p> <p>An infringement for driving an unregistered vehicle in the ACT is $700 while the fine for driving an uninsured car is $973. </p> <p>The mobile detection cameras could also soon be programmed to detect speeding in the ACT. </p> <p>In South Australia, authorities began testing overhead mobile detection cameras at four busy locations in April, fines are currently not being issued, but the grace period is due to finish on June 19. </p> <p>Drivers caught using their phones in Adelaide will be fined $540 and three demerit points. </p> <p><em>Image: </em><em>Stepan Skorobogadko / Shutterstock.com</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Singapore Airlines offers huge compensation to turbulence victims

<p>Singapore Airlines has offered compensation to passengers who were on board the SQ321 flight, that encountered deadly turbulence last month. </p> <p>One man died of a heart attack and a dozen others were <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/travel/travel-trouble/victim-identified-after-plane-hits-deadly-turbulence" target="_blank" rel="noopener">injured </a>when the flight from London to Singapore experienced sudden and extreme turbulence while flying over Myanmar. </p> <p>The flight carrying 211 passengers and 18 crew members diverted to Bangkok for an emergency landing, where the injured were treated, with some suffering spinal, brain and skull injuries. </p> <p>In a recent statement, the airline said that they will offer anyone injured on the flight from US$10,000 (AU $15,150) in compensation. </p> <p>"For passengers who sustained minor injuries from the incident, we have offered US$10,000 [$15,150] in compensation," they said. </p> <p>"For those who sustained more serious injuries from the incident, we have invited them to discuss a compensation offer."</p> <p>The airline said they sent out the compensation offers on June 10. </p> <p>"Passengers medically assessed as having sustained serious injuries, requiring long-term medical care, and requesting financial assistance are offered an advance payment of US$25,000 to address their immediate needs,"  the compensation offer read. </p> <p>They will also provide full refunds of the air fare to all passengers who were on flight SQ321, regardless of their injuries. </p> <p>All passengers were also provided AU$1,120 for their expenses in Bangkok. </p> <p>"SIA has also been covering the medical expenses of the injured passengers, and arranged for their family members and loved ones to fly up to Bangkok where requested," the airline said. </p> <p>Under international regulations, airlines must offer compensation when passengers are injured or die on a plane. </p> <p>Director of Carter Capner Law, Peter Carter, who is representing passengers on the flight, said all passengers should seek legal advice before signing anything with the airline. </p> <p>"I doubt there is anyone on the aircraft who did not suffer an injury one way or the other. The insurer should clarify that the $10,000 offer covers all passengers including those who endured the terror of the moment but were fortunate to escape physical injury," he told <em>ABC News</em>. </p> <p>"Those with any sort of injury should exercise extreme care and should be evaluated by their own medical specialists to determine how this accident might still affect them."</p> <p><em>Image: Andrew Davies/X</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Almost half the men surveyed think they could land a passenger plane. Experts disagree

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/guido-carim-junior-1379129">Guido Carim Junior</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/chris-campbell-1414564">Chris Campbell</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/elvira-marques-1362476">Elvira Marques</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/nnenna-ike-1490692">Nnenna Ike</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tim-ryley-1253269">Tim Ryley</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a></em></p> <p>Picture this: you’re nestled comfortably in your seat cruising towards your holiday destination when a flight attendant’s voice breaks through the silence:</p> <blockquote> <p>Ladies and gentlemen, both pilots are incapacitated. Are there any passengers who could land this plane with assistance from air traffic control?</p> </blockquote> <p>If you think you could manage it, you’re not alone. <a href="https://today.yougov.com/topics/politics/survey-results/daily/2023/01/02/fd798/3">Survey results</a> published in January indicate about one-third of adult Americans think they could safely land a passenger aircraft with air traffic control’s guidance. Among male respondents, the confidence level rose to nearly 50%.</p> <p>Can a person with no prior training simply guide everyone to a smooth touchdown?</p> <p>We’ve all heard stories of passengers who saved the day when the pilot became unresponsive. For instance, last year <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbMoyWukjbs">Darren Harrison</a> managed to land a twin-engine aircraft in Florida – after the pilot passed out – with the guidance of an air traffic controller who also happened to be a flight instructor.</p> <p>However, such incidents tend to take place in small, simple aircraft. Flying a much bigger and heavier commercial jet is a completely different game.</p> <h2>You can’t always rely on autopilot</h2> <p>A pilot spends about 90% of their time monitoring autopilot systems and making sure everything is working as intended. The other 10% is spent managing problems, taxiing, taking off and landing.</p> <p>Takeoffs and landings are arguably the most difficult tasks pilots perform, and are always performed manually. Only on very few occasions, and in a handful of aircraft models, can a pilot use autopilot to land the aircraft for them. This is the exception, and not the rule.</p> <p>For takeoff, the aircraft must build up speed until the wings can generate enough lift to pull it into the air. The pilot must <a href="https://youtu.be/16XTAK-4Xbk?si=66yDo5g5I086Q2y2&amp;t=65">pay close attention</a> to multiple instruments and external cues, while keeping the aircraft centred on the runway until it reaches lift-off speed.</p> <p>Once airborne, they must coordinate with air traffic control, follow a particular path, retract the landing gear and maintain a precise speed and direction while trying to climb.</p> <p>Landing is even more complicated, and requires having precise control of the aircraft’s direction and descent rate.</p> <p><a href="https://youtu.be/u_it9OiTnSM?si=xNZrLB9ZH870LEa3&amp;t=360">To land successfully</a>, a pilot must keep an appropriate speed while simultaneously managing gear and flap configuration, adhering to air traffic regulations, communicating with air traffic control and completing a number of paper and digital checklists.</p> <p>Once the aircraft comes close to the runway, they must accurately judge its height, reduce power and adjust the rate of descent – ensuring they land on the correct area of the runway.</p> <p>On the ground, they will use the brakes and reverse thrust to bring the aircraft to a complete stop before the runway ends. This all happens within just a few minutes.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Nyx4NyMrvOs?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>Both takeoff and landing are far too quick, technical and concentration-intensive for an untrained person to pull off. They also require a range of skills that are only gained through extensive training, such as understanding the information presented on different gauges, and being able to coordinate one’s hands and feet in a certain way.</p> <h2>Training a pilot</h2> <p>The journey from student to commercial pilot is a long one. It normally starts with a recreational licence, followed by a private licence, and then a commercial licence (which allows them to fly professionally).</p> <p>Even before stepping into a cockpit, the student must study aerodynamics, air law and flight rules, meteorology, human factors, navigation, aircraft systems, and performance and flight planning. They also need to spend time learning about the specific aircraft they will be flying.</p> <p>Once the fundamentals are grasped, an instructor takes them for training. Most of this training is conducted in small, lightweight aircraft – with a simulator introduced briefly towards the end.</p> <p>During a lesson, each manoeuvre or action is demonstrated by the instructor before the student attempts it. Their attempt may be adjusted, corrected or even terminated early in critical situations.</p> <p>The first ten to fifteen lessons focus on takeoff, landing, basic in-flight control and emergency management. When the students are ready, they’re allowed to “go solo” – wherein they conduct a complete flight on their own. This is a great milestone.</p> <p>After years of experience, they are ready to transition to a commercial aircraft. At this point they might be able to take off and land reasonably well, but they will still undergo extensive training specific to the aircraft they are flying, including hours of advanced theory, dozens of simulator sessions and hundreds of hours of real aircraft training (most of which is done with passengers onboard).</p> <p>So, if you’ve never even learned the basics of flying, your chances of successfully landing a passenger aircraft with air traffic control’s help are close to zero.</p> <h2>Yet, flying is a skill like any other</h2> <p>Aviation training has been democratised by the advent of high-end computers, virtual reality and flight simulation games such as Microsoft’s <a href="https://www.flightsimulator.com/">Flight Simulator</a> and <a href="https://www.x-plane.com/">X-Plane</a>.</p> <p>Anyone can now rig up a desktop flight simulator for a few thousand dollars. Ideally, such a setup should also include the basic physical controls found in a cockpit, such as a control yoke, throttle quadrant and pedals.</p> <p>Flight simulators provide an immersive environment in which professional pilots, students and aviation enthusiasts can develop their skills. So if you really think you could match-up against a professional, consider trying your hand at one.</p> <p>You almost certainly won’t be able to land an actual passenger plane by the end of it – but at least you’ll gain an appreciation for the immense skill pilots possess.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/218037/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/guido-carim-junior-1379129"><em>Guido Carim Junior</em></a><em>, Senior Lecturer in Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/chris-campbell-1414564">Chris Campbell</a>, Adjunct Associate Professor, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/elvira-marques-1362476">Elvira Marques</a>, Aviation PhD candidate, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/nnenna-ike-1490692">Nnenna Ike</a>, Research Assistant, Griffith Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tim-ryley-1253269">Tim Ryley</a>, Professor and Head of Griffith Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: </em><em>Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/almost-half-the-men-surveyed-think-they-could-land-a-passenger-plane-experts-disagree-218037">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Travel Trouble

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Cancer-causing chemicals found in Aussie tap water sparks safety concerns

<p>A landmark ruling in the US has sparked safety concerns over Australian tap water, with many wondering if it is safe to drink. </p> <p>After the US tightened their regulations around drinking tap water, cutting the maximum level of cancer-causing so-called “forever chemicals” allowed, experts have urged Australia to do the same. </p> <p>Earlier this year, the US Environmental Protection Agency found there was “no safe level of exposure” of the chemicals perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in drinking water and they were likely to cause cancer.</p> <p>The toxic substances have also been linked to kidney and liver disease, thyroid dysregulation, reproductive problems, and developmental problems.</p> <p>According to a federally funded University of Queensland study published in 2011, Australia permits per-and-poly-fluoroalkyl (PFAS) substances at levels up to 140 times higher than those allowed in the US.</p> <p>Health Minister Mark Butler has asked key political players, including Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly, for an urgent briefing following the US developments.</p> <p>The National Health and Medical Research Council, which shapes the nation’s water rules, is reviewing its guidelines relating to the chemicals, and that could be expedited ahead of its 2025 end date.</p> <p>“Australian drinking water is regularly monitored for the presence of chemicals, including PFAS, to ensure those are within the limits assessed as safe by Australian regulators,” a spokesperson for the Health Minister said.</p> <p>“This independent review will consider recent guidance and reviews from international and national jurisdictions and determine whether they are suitable to adopt or adapt for Australia.”</p> <p>Nicholas Chartres, a senior research fellow at the University of Sydney, called for a precautionary approach and immediate widespread testing of the nation’s water supplies.</p> <p>“The government needs to take action. They need to be testing the water (and) it will come at a cost,” he said.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Restaurant sparks debate over “age discrimination”

<p>A US restaurant has gone viral for their "age policy" after they decided to ban young people in a bid to create a “grown and sexy” vibe. </p> <p>Bliss Restaurant opened its doors in St. Louis, Missouri last month and have already caused an uproar for their unique policy where men under 35 and women under 30 are not allowed in. </p> <p>Owners Marvin Pate and his wife, said that they created the rule to help them “maintain a sophisticated environment, uphold our standards, and support the sustainability of our unique ambience”.</p> <p>Despite getting some backlash over the policy, they insist that they will stick to their code. </p> <p>“I think Bliss is a home away from home,” he told local news station <em>KSDK</em>.</p> <p>“You can come here and actually feel like you’re at a resort. People will feel like they’re on a vacation.</p> <p>“Of course, we have been getting a little backlash because of our policy, but that’s OK. We’re sticking to our code.”</p> <p>Pate is so committed to providing a space for older people, that if anyone looks younger than 30, they will get their ID's checked. </p> <p>“The restaurant is just something for the older people to come do, have a happy hour, come get some good food and not have to worry about some of the young folks who bring some of that drama,” assistant manager Erica Rhodes added.</p> <p>A few people have slammed the restaurant, suggesting that the rule was “age discrimination”.  </p> <p>“The owner barely makes his own age requirement. Come on,” one vented online.</p> <p>“I’ve never seen a bar fight that wasn’t started by some drunk over 30,” another added. </p> <p>“I feel like it’s usually older people acting out nowadays," and another person replied: “Y’all ever seen a Karen under 30?”</p> <p>However, in the age of young influencers, many thought the restriction  “makes sense". </p> <p>“Ah, Bliss, no influencers with those bright lights and filming while everyone else is trying to have a nice meal,” one said. </p> <p>“I like the concept, it’s time we mature adults can dine in a relaxing atmosphere without kids screaming, parents screaming, aggressive behaviours,” another added. </p> <p>“I love the age requirements. Please keep it like this. Don’t change it a lot of places back in the day had age requirements I’m glad that somebody finally taking it back protect your business I support,” a third wrote. </p> <p>“I love this idea!!!! Perfect!!!! And for all those gripping and complaining about it…..or have some smartelic comment….. just wait. One day your day is coming," another mused. </p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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What the fox! Driver finds wild animal trapped in his car

<p>A motorist has shared the startling moment a fox got trapped in the front grill of his car, after he accidentally hit the wild animal while travelling at 80km/h. </p> <p>While driving down a country road in South Australia on Saturday night, the man behind the wheel said he was shocked when he felt something slam into the car. </p> <p>When he later checked the vehicle, he was astonished to find the angry fox trying to break free from behind the front grill of the car. </p> <p>“Y’all thought you had a bad day,” he can be heard saying while filming the animal furiously biting the front grill in an attempt to escape.</p> <p>In a series of videos posted to TikTok, the man documented the fox's attempts at escape, before informing his followers that he had enlisted the help of a local vet to help free the animal. </p> <p>“Took him to the vet, they sedated him and we got him out safely, the poor guy,” he said, adding he was glad — and impressed — the fox was alive after such a high-speed impact.</p> <p>Throughout his videos, many took to the comments to offer their advice to free the fox, as one person suggested "popping the lid", with the driver explaining that he did but “couldn’t even see him through the bonnet”.</p> <p>The saga has been viewed more than 400,000 times in the past 24 hours, with numerous people saying they were stunned the fox wasn’t seriously injured. “How does this even happen?” one person wondered.</p> <p>“What in the fox is going on here!” another joked, while others pondered how the man would explain the incident to his insurance company.</p> <p>“Insurance would never believe you if you didn’t have that video,” someone else added.</p> <p><em>Image credits: TikTok</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Why you shouldn’t worry if the plane cabin fills with fog

<p dir="ltr">A savvy traveller has shared why plane cabins can fill with fog, and why you need not to worry about it. </p> <p dir="ltr">Passenger Savannah Gowarty posted a video of the suspiciously looking inflight mist and condensation on a domestic US flight, with the video garnered over 13.1 million views, and amazing and confusing commentators questioning what was going on.</p> <p dir="ltr">In response to the viral video, a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) spokesperson told <em><a href="https://cnn.com/travel">CNN Travel</a></em> what it means. </p> <p dir="ltr">The short answer: it's a natural occurrence that usually only lasts a short while, and it's nothing to worry about.</p> <p dir="ltr">"On hot and relatively humid days, cold air from the aircraft's air conditioning system mixes with the warmer, humid cabin air and lowers it to the dew point, creating fog," the spokesperson said. </p> <p dir="ltr">"The fog is generally short-lived as the cooled air quickly warms above the dew point."</p> <p dir="ltr">When an airplane is waiting on the ground pre-departure, the aircraft cabin air is kept cool "either from an external ground air conditioning unit or the aircraft's own Auxiliary Power Unit (APU)," as the FAA spokesperson explains.</p> <p dir="ltr">"Both provide cold air (usually much cooler than the ambient temperature) which can temporarily lower the dew point of the aircraft cabin air enough to create fog."</p> <p dir="ltr">Climate scientist Indrani Roy emphasised that neither mist nor any resulting condensation is "cause for alarm."</p> <p dir="ltr">The FAA spokesperson went on to explain that "aircraft cabin fog usually dissipates very quickly."</p> <p dir="ltr">"This is due to the colder air (which lowered the cabin air temperature to its dew point) quickly warms back above the dew point. Once that happens, the fog will disappear.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“Many times, the fog only appears as it comes out of the vent, exists for 1-2 seconds and then is gone."</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p>

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10 ways to cruise as a senior

<p>Just because you’re older, that doesn’t mean you can’t experience all that a cruising holiday has to offer. Follow our simple tips for a fun filled holiday on the water.</p> <p><strong>1. Choose the right ship</strong></p> <p>Cruise ships today carry anywhere from six to 6,000 people. The larger megaliners tend to be geared towards families with plenty of crazy rides and high-energy activities. They’ll also probably be crowded with kids. Smaller boutique ships operate at a slower pace and are generally stocked with an older crowd. Do your research and find one to suit you.</p> <p><strong>2. And the right cabin</strong></p> <p>Do you need an accessible cabin? Do you want to reduce walking with a cabin close to the elevators? Is it important for you to have some outside space of your own? These are all important questions that you’ll need to answer when you book. The right cabin can make or break a cruise.</p> <p><strong>3. Pick an appropriate itinerary</strong></p> <p>You’ll need to decide if you want to visit new places every day or spend more time onboard the ship. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. Port heavy itineraries, where you’re stopping at a new destination every day, can be tiring. On the other hand, you might get bored with too many days at sea.  Think realistically about your needs and make the right choice for you.</p> <p><strong>4. Research your dates</strong></p> <p>One of the best things about being a senior traveller is that you are (generally) no longer bound by things like school holidays. By avoiding these times you’ll not only save money, you won’t be on a ship with an unusually high proportion of children. When cruising in the Caribbean, you’ll also need to keep in mind the US college holidays so you’re not trapped with a bunch of boozy spring breakers.</p> <p><strong>5. Allow extra time</strong></p> <p>It’s a sad fact of ageing that you’re not as quick on your feet as you used to be. That means you’ll need to factor in extra time for just about everything. Ships can be huge, so you don’t want to be rushing to make a dinner reservation or spa appointment. This applies on shore too. If you’re really late, the ship will leave without you so don’t cut it too fine.</p> <p><strong>6. Choose the right shore excursions</strong></p> <p>Before you book, have a chat with the shore excursions team and get a good idea of the physical requirements. What they consider minimal walking might not be the same as what you consider minimal walking. These tours aren’t cheap, so you want to be sure that you can enjoy everything it involves.</p> <p><strong>7. Look at onboard activities</strong></p> <p>You might not want to get off at every port (which can be exhausting) but still want to be entertained onboard. And adventurous activities like skydiving simulators and giant waterslides may not be your thing any more. Many cruise lines offer fantastic enrichment programs onboard where you can listen to world-class lecturers, learn new skills or watch performances from the likes of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts or the Lincoln Centre.</p> <p><strong>8. Give yourself time to relax</strong></p> <p>You’re on holiday! If you want to spend a day in bed, watching movies and ordering room service then do exactly that. Don’t feel any pressure to be up and about every day.</p> <p><strong>9. Travel with the right companions</strong></p> <p>Solo, couple, friends or family, there’s a cruise for every group. Cruising is hugely popular with multi-generational groups as there something for everyone to do, but it might not make for the most relaxing holiday. If you’re a solo traveller, you can book a single cabin all to yourself or find a room mate with any number of matching services. Just think carefully – because once you’re onboard with your travel buddy, there’s no getting off.</p> <p><strong>10. Think about medical care</strong></p> <p>Be realistic about any medical needs you may have. Most ships have a decent medical centre, but if you are spending multiple days at sea or cruising to very remote destinations and something happens it might not be enough to help you. If you are concerned, choose cruises that stay close to shore or visit developed countries where you can get proper treatment quickly.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p>

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Wild moment giraffe snatches toddler from car

<p>A father has recalled the heart-stopping moment his toddler was snatched by a giraffe at a safari park in Texas. </p> <p>Jason Toten, 24, his fiancé Sierra Robert, 23, and their daughter Paisley were at Fossil Rim Wildlife Centre in Glen Rose where visitors can drive-through the park and get close to wild animals. </p> <p>"We were having a little family day, just getting out of the house," Jason told a local news outlet. </p> <p>While the family were admiring the view, one giraffe slowly approached them and the pair encouraged their daughter to offer it some food, but within an instant, the two-year-old girl was lifted into the air.</p> <p>"I looked out the back window and I saw the giraffe … and then up she went," Jason recalled. </p> <p>The giraffe, who was only trying to grab the bag of food from Paisley, accidentally hoisted the toddler up by her shirt, with other park visitors behind them capturing the wild moment. </p> <p>Sierra reacted immediately and clung to her child, as she was pulled into the air, and all it took for the giraffe to let go was a stern "hey". </p> <p>The giraffe then dropped the tot back into the car uninjured, and throughout the entire ordeal Paisley was the bravest of them all. </p> <p>"I guess it startled the giraffe. She wasn't even scared," Jason recalled. </p> <p>"As soon as her mom caught her, she went 'oh.'" </p> <p>"It scared me but after it was all over, we realised everyone was safe and unharmed, and we laughed about it," Jason added. </p> <p>After the incident, the family took Paisley to the gift shop and "all she wanted was a giraffe toy and a giraffe T-shirt."</p> <p>"We ended up getting her both, we figured she deserved it."</p> <p><em>Images: Facebook</em></p>

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