Infrastructure Daily News 03.31.11

Transportation Sector

. March 30, Associated Press – (District of Columbia; Illinois; Oregon) DC flight diverted over security arrives in Oregon. An Oregon-bound United Airlines flight from Washington, D.C., that was diverted to Chicago, Illinois, for security concerns landed March 30 in Portland, Oregon. A United spokesman told KGW-TV that passengers on Flight 251 from Dulles International Airport in Dulles, Virginia, were taken off after the plane landed at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago March 29, and re-screened through security. He said two or three passengers who had not been following crew instructions during the flight, were not on board the plane when it continued to Portland International Airport. The spokesman said he could not say whether the passengers were detained. He said another passenger was ill, which may have complicated the situation on the plane. It was not immediately clear how many passengers were aboard. Source: at-Portland-1313941.php

. March 30, CNN – (North Carolina) Hole in US Airways plane was caused by a bullet, sources say. A hole in a US Airways jet that landed in Charlotte, North Carolina, was caused by a bullet that pierced the passenger cabin, three government sources told CNN March 29. Officials believe the bullet was fired in Charlotte, after passengers had exited the aircraft, one source said. The hole was discovered after the Boeing 737-400 landed March 28. The sources said a bullet has been recovered inside the plane. “We do not believe it is terrorism related,” one of the government sources said. “It appears to be a random event. We do not believe the plane was targeted. No one heard the bullet fired.” An investigation into who fired the shot into the aircraft has begun, multiple government sources said. Source: 2

. March 29, Bloomberg – (International) Ships stick with Tokyo as Navy says radiation easily purged. Five of the six biggest container shippers are maintaining routes to Tokyo and Yokohama after the U.S. Navy said radiation on vessels from the leaking Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant can be scrubbed off with soap and water. The Japanese government is allowing ships to sail as close as 30 kilometers to the stricken reactors, and the International Maritime Organization, a United Nations agency, said operations in and out of Japan can continue as normal, with levels of radiation presenting no medical basis for imposing restrictions. “These are extremely low levels and are easily cleaned off,” a spokesman for Seventh Fleet, which is helping with recovery efforts, said March 28. “Even if they weren’t, they still wouldn’t rise to the level where they would cause any harm to human health.” Tokyo port, which accounted for 22 percent of Japanese container shipping throughput last year, according to market researcher Alphaliner, has tried to ease fears through steps, including posting data about radiation readings. Levels were safe as of March 27, according to the transport ministry’s Web site. Source: says-radiation-easily-purged.html

. March 29, WAPT 16 Jackson – (Mississippi) Barge hits Mississippi river bridge in Natchez. A barge struck the Highway 84 Mississippi River Bridge in Natchez, Mississippi, early March 29, Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) officials said. The westbound lanes were shut down for about 2 hours to allow inspectors to inspect the bridge. The bridge was inspected and all lanes of traffic on the Highway 84 Mississippi River Bridge were reopened to traffic before 9 a.m., MDOT said. Crews were still working to remove a sunken barge from the Mississippi River Bridge in Warren County. On March 23, a tow boat crashed into the Old Vicksburg Bridge. Several barges being pushed by the towing vessel came free and one barge collided with the Interstate 20 Bridge, partially sank, and is considered a hazard to navigation, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) said. As a result, USCG has put limits on the size and horsepower of tows 6 miles north and south of the Mississippi River bridges at Vicksburg. Interstate 20 Bridge vehicle traffic in Warren County will remain unaffected during salvage operations, USCG said. Source:

. March 29, Oakland Tribune – (California) No bomb found on Amtrak train at Oakland station. An Amtrak train was evacuated and searched March 29 in Oakland, California, following a bomb threat, but no explosives were found on board, police said. Police were called to the Amtrak station at 2nd and Alice streets in Jack London Square March 29. The 13 passengers aboard the train that was slated to leave Oakland for Bakersfield, California, at 5:50 p.m. were evacuated from the train. No one was injured. An Amtrak spokeswoman said it was not immediately clear who called in the report of the possible bomb, or if the call was made to police or the transit agency. Some streets around the station were closed temporarily. Bomb technicians from the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office were brought in, but nothing was found on the train. Source:

. March 29, Sun-Times Media Wire – (Illinois) Shooting causes CTA bus accident on south side. Gunfire from a moving vehicle preceded a multi-car accident that sent a Chicago, Illinois, bus crashing into a utility pole and injured 11 people March 29, police said. No one was shot when gunfire erupted around 9:30 a.m. on the city’s South Side, a Chicago police spokesman said. Two people were hospitalized in serious to critical condition, though many of the injuries were caused by shattered glass, authorities said. Police and Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) officials said a car crashed into the bus, which then ran into the pole. Authorities would not say whether the shooting caused the crash or targeted one of the vehicles. “Detectives continue the investigation and will review any surveillance video in the area,” police said in a statement March 29. No arrests have been made. Some witnesses reported seeing gunmen get out of a truck and start firing, and said their target appeared to be the first vehicle. Police would not confirm whether gunmen were outside a vehicle, or other witness reports. Source: possible-shots-fired-20110329 For more stories, see items 22, 29, and 51

Postal and Shipping Sector

. March 30, BBC News – (International) ‘Fake bomb’ UPS flight from UK to Turkey investigated. An investigation has been launched into how a fake bomb was put on a cargo plane and flown from the United Kingdom (UK) to Turkey without being detected in early March. The UPS flight traveled to Istanbul with the package, reportedly containing a timer, wires, and a detonator. The UK Department for Transport said it was taking the matter “very seriously.” A 26-year-old man, arrested on suspicion of making a bomb hoax, was detained March 23, but later bailed out of jail to return to a London police station in May. Police said the incident was not terroristrelated. A Turkish man had delivered the package, disguised as a wedding cake box, to a UPS office in Camden, according to ITV News. A department for transport spokesman said, “We have already begun an investigation which will look at all aspects of this incident, including UPS’s procedures. The UK has one of the toughest security regimes for air cargo in the world. All security measures are subject to continuous review.” A UPS spokeswoman said, “UPS is co-operating with the UK Department for Transport’s investigation of the incident. UPS has a multiple-layered approach to ensure security.” Details of which UK airport the flight took off from have not been released. Source:

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