EVA in emergency landing
An EVA Airways passenger plane en route to Austria made an emergency landing in the Ukraine on Wednesday after a “pressure imbalance,” the carrier said yesterday. Flight 61 took off from Bangkok on Tuesday and landed safely at Simferopol Intentional Airport in the Ukraine two hours before its arrival time in Austria, the company said. The pilot deployed the cabin oxygen masks to help ease passengers’ discomfort caused by the drop in cabin pressure when the plane suddenly descended from 40,000 feet (12,192m) to 11,000 feet. All the passengers were transferred at Simferopol and proceeded to Austria, the company said. Osterreich, a Viennese newspaper, reported that the emergency landing was prompted by a loss of cabin pressure, but EVA officials denied this and ascribed the problem to “pressure imbalance” that was being investigated.
The country’s longest--serving elected representative, Huang Kuo-tsung (黃國宗) — who will have been a Miaoli City councilor for 50 years by the time he finishes his term in December 2014 — was honored at a ceremony at the Ministry of the Interior yesterday for his dedication, having served on the council without interruption since 1964. Huang said he never set up a campaign headquarters. “I always had one slogan: ‘Serve the people,’” the 82-year-old councilor told the media after the ceremony. “Of course the job can be tiring at times, but I’m grateful of the chance to serve the people.” Huang said he would retire after finishing this term due to his advanced years, but rwould continue to serve the people if called upon.
A-bian office head resigns
Former president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) office director Chen Sung-shan (陳淞山) announced his resignation yesterday, but said that he would continue to work for the former first couple behind the scenes. Chen Sung-shan, who took the post in June, was responsible for releasing statements from the former president as part of the former first family’s continuing legal proceedings. His departure is likely motivated by budget cutbacks at the office, after a new legislative amendment cut off all government subsidies to the former president, who is currently serving a 17-and-a-half-year sentence for corruption. Separately, several of Chen Shui-bian’s supporters said they plan to hold a rally on the third of every month, starting next month, outside Taipei Prison to keep his spirits up.
CAL unveils parade float
China Airlines (CAL) on Wednesday unveiled its float for the Rose Parade, scheduled for tomorrow in Pasadena, California. The float, which features the Chinese tradition of dragon boat racing, will mark the air carrier’s 25th appearance in the annual parade. According to Chang Feng-ping (張鳳炳), director of CAL’s North America division, dragon boat racing was chosen as the theme this year because CAL wants to introduce the festival to the rest of the world and attract more visitors to Taiwan. Two dragon boats will be displayed on the float, with rowers and drummers from Los Angeles. The performers will wear scarves designed to mark the 100th anniversary of the Republic of China. Drummer Chou Wan-yu (周婉瑜), who will be the only woman on the float, said she was extremely excited to have the chance to wear one of the special scarves.