Eurostar terminal at Brussels-Midi moves temporarily as from 17th August 2016
Refurbishment works are being carried out at the Eurostar terminal at Brussels –Midi station. These works will start from Wednesday 17th August for a duration of six months.
For the entire duration of these works, Eurostar passengers to the UK will check-in through a temporary Eurostar terminal located next to the ‘Proximus’ shop at the Galerie du Midi, alongside Place Horta.
Passengers do not need to plan additional check-in times despite this relocation: in spite of possible queues due to this new temporary layout, passengers must still check-in at least 30 mins before departure.
Eurostar passengers to Lille will still check-in at the Intra-Schengen terminal located on the balcony (1st floor) alongside Place Horta.
Unionized rail workers at Virgin Trains have announced plans to stage a series of 24-hour strikes across the company's entire East Coast line Aug. 19, 26, and 29. Moreover, overtime bans have been called for Aug. 27-29.
Virgin Trains officials claim that the line will remain on a normal timetable during the labour action. However, the walkout coincides with a bank holiday weekend when the number of travellers typically increases; hence, delays and other disruptions remain possible, especially if striking workers organize pickets outside major rail stations. Unless the strike is averted, resulting disruptions along East Coast line will likely prompt higher demand for alternative forms of transport. Heavier use of private vehicles could also cause increased traffic congestion and delays on alternative routes between major cities. Further strikes are possible if the dispute is not resolved.
A number of wildfires have been raging across the Portuguese continent for several days, with police officials admitting that seven have spun out of control. A team of more than 3,000 firefighters are tackling the blazes with the support of 23 water-dumping aircraft.
A further 125 fires have broken out on the Portuguese mainland, but these are thought to be less serious.
They appear to have been caused by a combination of high temperatures, parched woodland and strong winds - August is seen as the peak time for wildfires in Portugal and other southern European countries.
The Madeira regional government has told public employees not to attend work in Funchal today unless they are considered essential in the firefighting and relief efforts.
A draft amendment to China’s aviation law was published last week to crackdown on bad behaviour by air passengers. Among the 14 types of illegal behaviour that will be considered as endangering flight safety is using mobile phones in-flight, smoking, forcibly occupying seats, blocking aisles and gates, breaking into airports and planes and assaulting crew members or other workers. Fines of up to 50,000 Yuan (US$7,515) could be imposed for anyone breaking the rules!
Over 200 workers are scheduled to stage a protest march to three separate locations including Jakarta City Hall to submit a petition to ‘Save Jakarta’. Led by Confederation of Indonesian Workers, the protest is calling for an increase in wages and for the Corruption Eradication Commission to reportedly arrest the governor of Jakarta due to his alleged involvement in corruption. Travellers are likely to encounter traffic disruption and increased security presence during the rallies.
Indonesian carriers cleared for US flights after nine-year ban
The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said Indonesia had been upgraded to ‘Category 1’ – the top-tier-air-safety rating – after nearly a decade.
Indonesia’s fast-growing aviation market suffered several high-profile accidents and was downgraded in 2007.
The European Union also recently lifted a ban on three Indonesian airlines.
After a safety review in March, Indonesia now complies with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) safety standards, the FAA said in a statement.
The South-east Asian nation has had 13 fatal plane crashes in the past decade, according to Flightglobal data, higher than the global average.
Indonesia's state carrier Garuda Indonesia could begin flying to the US next year, reports said. It is reportedly exploring a possible new service from the Indonesian capital Jakarta to New York or Los Angeles.
India and the Philippines were returned to Category 1 status in recent years after making improvements. However, Thailand was downgraded last December.
Tropical Storm Chanthu tracking northwestward in the Pacific Ocean Aug. 16. Landfall projected on northeastern Honshu or Hokkaido, Japan, Aug. 17-18
Tropical Storm Chanthu is continuing to track northwestward in the western Pacific Ocean toward Japan. Chanthu is forecast to turn slightly northeastward and maintain its strength at around 35 kts (64 kph, 40 mph) as it tracks roughly parallel to northeastern Honshu through Aug. 17, before making landfall in far northeastern Honshu Aug. 17 or Horoizumi in southern Hokkaido early Aug. 18. However, the system could still change course and make landfall farther south on Honshu, east of the greater Tokyo area.
Heavy rainfall and coastal surge are likely along the southern and eastern coasts of Honshu and Hokkaido islands, as well as the southern Kuril Islands. Flash flooding and areal flooding are possible, especially in urban areas. Landslides are probable in hill and mountain areas. Flooding and/or landslides could cause ground transport disruptions; road closures are possible on secondary routes, while rail service is likely to be impacted between Tokyo and northern destinations in Honshu, as well as on JR Hokkaido routes.
Wind gusts could trigger flight disruptions at airports along Chanthu's path, including at Tokyo's Narita (NRT) and Haneda (HND) airports in Honshu and Sapporo-New Chitose (CTS), Kushiro (KUH), and Nakashibetsu (SHB) in Hokkaido; airlines will probably announce cancellations in advance of the storm's arrival. Chanthu's winds may down trees and damage telecommunications infrastructure, potentially causing power outages, especially in Pacific-facing prefectures of northeastern Honshu. Downed trees and landslides may block roads in some areas, hampering immediate relief efforts.
Authorities may restrict or briefly halt operations at ports along Honshu's northeastern coast; though major disruptions are less likely at ports in the Kanto region, some delays may occur. Temporary disruptions are also possible in Hokkaido, including at ports in Hakkodate, Kushiro, and Wakkanai.
Milwaukee: Ongoing violent clashes and rioting continue within the Sherman Park area of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, as a result of an incident during which an armed ‘suspect’ was reportedly killed by a police officer. Travellers should currently avoid this area.
Gulf Coast: Historic flooding continues along the Gulf Coast, US; additional rainfall, flooding forecast through at least Aug. 18. Transport disruptions ongoing.
Historic flooding continues across parts of the central and western Gulf Coast Aug. 15. The heaviest rains have occurred in southern Louisiana, where widespread rainfall totals of 12-18 inches (30-46 cm) have accumulated since Aug. 12; localized amounts of over 30 inches (76 cm) were recorded in some areas. Much of the persistent rainfall has moved westward into portions of southern and eastern Texas; however, the southern Louisiana area could receive an additional 1-3 inches (2.5-8 cm) through Aug. 18.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued flood warnings for a number of parishes in southern Louisiana. Several streams, creeks, rivers, and bayous are overflowing and causing widespread areal flooding. It could take several days for the waters to recede and for officials to lift the warnings. In southern and eastern Texas, additional rainfall of 3-5 inches (8-13 cm) is forecast in some spots, and flash and areal flooding is possible. The NWS has issued flash flood watches for a number of counties in southern Texas; most of the watches are set to expire by the evening Aug. 15, though they could be extended or upgraded to warnings since rainfall is expected to continue through at least Aug. 18.
President Barack Obama issued a federal disaster declaration for Louisiana on Aug. 14. The declaration will provide federal aid to those in East Baton Rouge, Livingston, Tangipahoa, and St. Helena parishes, though additional parishes could be added in the future. As of early Aug. 15, authorities have performed over 20,000 water rescues in southern Louisiana; nearly 10,000 people are in shelters. The historic flooding has resulted in the deaths of at least five individuals. Authorities could issue boil water advisories and mandatory evacuation orders; floodwaters and adverse weather conditions could contribute to power and utility outages throughout the affected area.
The flash and areal flooding has resulted in significant overland transport disruptions in Louisiana. As of early Aug. 15, I-10 was closed between US 165 and I-49; I-12 is also closed to traffic between Airline Highway in Baton Rouge and US 190 in St. Tammany Parish. Authorities have not provided an estimated time for reopening the interstates. Several other routes in southern Louisiana, especially low-lying roads, are completely inundated and partially or completely closed to traffic. Additional traffic and commercial trucking disruptions are likely along the I-20, I-35, I-37, I-49, and I-55 in Louisiana and Texas. Low visibility and heavy rainfall could cause flight disruptions at regional airports, including those serving Baton Rouge (BTR), New Orleans (MSY), Dallas (DFW, DAL), Houston (IAH, HOU), Austin (AUS), and San Antonio (SAT), through Aug. 18.