Pilots mix up runways
A pilot and his co-pilot have been suspended after they tried to take off from a taxiway rather than a runway at Hong Kong International Airport, investigators said yesterday. An air traffic controller raised the alarm when he saw a South Korea-bound Hong Kong Airlines Boeing 737 carrying 122 passengers hurtling down a taxiway running parallel to the airport’s north runway. The controller radioed the pilot and alerted him in time for him to abort the takeoff after around 500m and take off from the runway instead, Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department said. Since the incident, a memo has been sent out by management to all Hong Kong Airlines pilots saying, “Ensure you are on a runway before taking off.”
Teacher arrested for camera
A primary school teacher was arrested after spy cameras were found in a girls’ changing room, a newspaper reported yesterday. Pinhole cameras were put in a room where girls changed for dance classes at a primary school in the city’s Mongkok district, the South China Morning Post said. A 10-minute videotape showing nine girls changing their clothes in the classroom was also discovered after a dance teacher and students found the cameras, the newspaper said. A 32-year-old teacher who helped teach dance was arrested in connection with the incident and has been sacked by the school.
Rare otter spotted
Researchers said on Thursday they have found two hairy-nosed otters, which have been listed as the world’s rarest species, in a national park in the south part of the country. Scientists came across the pair in U Minh Ha National Park in March, a statement from the Carnivore and Pangolin Conservation Program said. “We were only about 2.5m away from them when we spotted the two otters. It was truly amazing to see such a rare species in the wild,” said research officer Nguyen Van Nhuan. Hairy-nosed otters were thought to be extinct in the 1990s. However, they have since been rediscovered in Cambodia, Thailand and Indonesia.
Pilot charged with murder
A pilot with Cathay Pacific Airlines has been charged with murder after a man died in a seaside brawl, the airline confirmed on Friday. Airbus 349 senior first officer David Chan, 33, was arrested and charged along with seven other suspects after the fracas in Hong Kong’s Big Wave Bay seaside resort last Saturday. A postmortem examination found that a 36-year-old man died from a blow to the head from a hard object during a fight between two groups of men. Chan, who joined Cathay Pacific in December 1998, telephoned his employers to say he was “unfit for duty” following his arrest. The married pilot is accused of murder along with suspects including a 34-year-old TV director, a 48-year-old company director and an office clerk aged 34.
Teen arrested for uploads
Customs officials on Friday arrested a 14-year-old boy suspected of placing 2,000 Chinese-language pop songs on a Web site for free downloading. The suspect, who was not identified because he is underage, is accused of uploading mostly Cantopop songs, as pop songs performed in the Cantonese language are known, customs official Michael Kwan said in a telephone interview. He said the boy is free on bail and has not been charged as the investigation continues.
Donkey thrown in jail