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2 WWII planes collide & crash at Texas airshow (Video)

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Two vintage World War Two-era planes have collided and crashed at an air show in the US state of Texas, killing at least two.

Footage shows the aircraft striking each other at a low altitude, breaking one of the aircraft in half. A fireball can be seen as it hits the ground.

The planes – one of them a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress – were taking part in a commemorative air show near Dallas.

It was not immediately clear how many people were in the two aircraft.

The Allied Pilots Association, which represents American Airlines pilots, said Terry Barker and Len Root – two of its former members – were among people who died in the collision.

Other media reports suggest as many as six people may have died in the collision.

Eyewitness Chris Kratovil – who was one of between 4,000 and 6,000 who had gathered to watch the Wings Over Dallas Airshow on Saturday – told the BBC he had “never seen a crowd grow more quiet or more still in just a blink of an eye”.

“It went from being a fairly excited, energetic crowd… to complete silence and stillness, and a lot of people, including myself, turned their children towards them and away from the airfield because there was burning wreckage in the middle of the airfield.”

The Federal Aviation Administration said it will investigate the crash at the three-day event, which describes itself as the US’s premiere WW2 air show and was being held in honour of Veterans Day,

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson called it a “terrible tragedy”.

“The videos are heart-breaking,” he tweeted. “Please, say a prayer for the souls who took to the sky to entertain and educate our families today.”

The number of casualties are not yet confirmed, he said, but added that nobody on the ground had been reported injured.

The event’s website states that several planes had been scheduled to do a flyover demonstration on Saturday.

The B-17 bomber played a major role in winning the air war against Germany in WW2.

The second plane, a P-63 Kingcobra, was a fighter aircraft used in the same war, but used in combat only by the Soviet Air Force.

The B-17 usually has a crew of about four to five people, while the P-63 has a single pilot, said Hank Coates, from the Commemorative Air Force which organised the event – but he could not confirm any fatalities.

“This was a WW2 flight demonstration type air show where we highlight the aircraft and their capabilities,” he told reporters.

(BBC News)

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Expressways generate whopping income during Avurudu season

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The expressways have generated an income of Rs. 159,802,950 from April 10 – 13, Road Development Authority (RDA) says.

According to the Director of Expressway Operation Maintenance and Management Division – R.A.D. Kahatapitiya.

Over 4,350,000 vehicles have used the expressways during this period, he has added.
As many as 366,000 vehicles have used the expressways during this three-day period.

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Special transport arrangements to those returning to Colombo

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Special train services are in operation from this evening (April 14) for people to return to Colombo after the Sinhala and Tamil New Year holidays, the Railways Department said.

Deputy General Manager of Sri Lanka Railways –  N.J. Indipolage stated that accordingly, eight additional train journeys will be in operation from Badulla, Galle and Beliatta railway stations to Colombo Fort.

The Department of Railways also mentioned that the office trains will be operational as per usual from April 16.

Meanwhile, the National Transport Commission has said that special buses will be deployed to transport those who had gone to their hometowns during the New Year.
Bus associations have also stated that buses to Colombo will be operational.

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Local multi-day fishing trawler seized with ICE & heroin worth over Rs. 3798 Mn.

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In another successful intelligence operation of the Sri Lanka Navy, a local multi-day fishing trawler (01) carrying a large haul of narcotics, with 06 suspects aboard, were intercepted about 133 nautical miles (about 246 km) off Dondra, south of Sri Lanka. 

The operation also resulted in the seizure of another local one-day fishing trawler (01) with 04 suspects, believed to have been there to fetch the consignment of narcotics mid-sea. The operation was mounted by deploying Sri Lanka Coast Guard Ship (SLCG) Samudraraksha which made the apprehension on 12th April 2024.

 The haul of narcotics included about 179kg and 906g of crystal methamphetamine (Ice) and about 83kg and 582g of heroin (with their packages). The Commander of the Navy, Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera arrived at the Galle Harbour on 13th April to inspect the consignment of narcotics held in this operation.
The Sri Lanka Navy and Coast Guard regularly patrol and conduct search operations along the island’s coast to prevent illegal activities, such as drug trafficking, stemming via sea routes.

During this dedicated operation based on naval intelligence, a suspicious multi-day fishing trawler, which was about 133 nautical miles (246 km) off the south coast of the island, was intercepted and searched by SLCG Samudraraksha. As the fishing trawler was suspected of smuggling a haul of crystal methamphetamine and heroin in 17 sacks, during the search, the narcotic-carrying trawler was held on 12th April, with 06 suspects aboard.

Additionally, SLCG Samudraraksha inspected another local one-day fishing trawler, which was plying suspiciously in the sea area. During the inspection, 04 suspects were apprehended, along with the trawler, on suspicion of attempting to exchange narcotics with the multi-day trawler previously seized.

Following a thorough search of the suspicious multi-day fishing trawler at the Galle Harbour on 13th April, authorities recovered 17 sacks containing crystal methamphetamine and heroin. The haul of crystal methamphetamine, weighing about 179kg and 906g (including packages), were in 129 packages, stuffed in 13 sacks and the stash of heroin, weighing about 83kg and 582g (including packages), were in 76 packages, contained in 04 sacks. The consignment of narcotics, along with the 06 suspects and the multi-day fishing trawler was handed over to the Police Narcotic Bureau (PNB) for onward legal action.

Moreover, the 04 individuals, along with the one-day fishing trawler, which were seized on suspicion of being involved in a drug exchange at sea, were also handed over to PNB for further legal action.

The individuals held in the operation are known to reside in the Weligama, Imaduwa, and Galle areas, ranging in age from 23 to 54 years old. Meanwhile, the gross street value of the consignment of drugs seized during this operation is believed to be more than Rs. 3798 million.

Including the recent confiscation, the Sri Lanka Navy has held drugs with a gross street value of over Rs. 9300 million during operations mounted so far in 2024. The Sri Lanka Navy – the country’s first line of defence is committed to coordinating with other law enforcement authorities, to carry out anti-drug operations of this nature in order to foil drug smuggling attempts being made in the guise of fishing.

(navy.lk)

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