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Huge breakthrough after Aussie couple murdered on overseas holiday

<p>Just days after Australian couple David Fisk and Lucita Cortez were <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/health/caring/australian-couple-killed-in-the-philippines-identified" target="_blank" rel="noopener">killed</a> in a luxury hotel in the Philippines, the suspected killer has reportedly turned himself in to police. </p> <p>The bodies of 54-year-old David Fisk and his de-facto partner Lucita Barquin Cortez, 55, were found with their hands and feet tied by hotel staff at the Lake Hotel in Tagaytay city, south of Manila, on Wednesday. </p> <p>The body of another woman, Cortez's  30-year-old daughter-in-law Mary who lives in the Philippines, was also found in the room. </p> <p>A week on from their deaths, Tagaytay Police Chief Charles Daven Capagcuan told the Associated Press that police had a breakthrough in the case when a suspect was identified by three hotel staff from CCTV footage. </p> <p>The identification of the suspect eventually led to his home where he decided to surrender, Capagcuan said.</p> <p>On Wednesday, Sunrise reporter Ben Downie shared the new developments.</p> <p>“Philippines police say this morning a man handed himself in over the hotel homicide where the killer carried out an execution-style attack binding his victims, slashing and suffocating them,” Downie said.</p> <p>“Hotel security footage showed the suspect leaving the room, but didn’t capture him entering, leading to the theory the killer had gained access from a window."</p> <p>“This certainly counts as a breakthrough with the surrendered suspect and closure for loved ones.”</p> <p>After hearing the news of the couple's sudden and tragic passing, Fisk's family, based in NSW's Sutherland Shire, issued a statement saying they "pray for answers and the truth in this horrific matter".</p> <p>"The love we have for our Father and Lucita is so dear and this situation is like living a nightmare," the family said.</p> <p><em>Image credits: GoFundMe / Facebook</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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"I want her parents to know": Fellow Qantas passenger reveals final moments of young woman

<p>The passenger who was seated next to the woman who tragically <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/travel/travel-trouble/young-woman-dies-on-qantas-flight" target="_blank" rel="noopener">died</a> after boarding a Qantas flight has broken his silence on her last moments. </p> <p>Ravinder Singh was seated next to Manpreet Kaur, who passed away shortly after boarding a flight from Melbourne to Delhi on June 20th. </p> <p>The 24-year-old student, who had dreams of becoming a chef, was travelling to see her parents in India for the first time in four years, but did not make it to her destination. </p> <p>Now, Ravinder Singh has shared details on her final moments in the hopes it will bring her grieving parents some comfort. </p> <p>“I was sitting next to her on the Qantas flight from Melbourne to Delhi and was actually the last person to talk to her,” Ravinder Singh exclusively told <a href="https://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-updates/incidents/passenger-speaks-after-woman-dies-next-to-him-on-qantas-flight/news-story/24e8396d8eb3a1d35aea4a4291b847ba" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>news.com.au</em></a>.</p> <p>“When I boarded the plane, she was already seated in the aisle. I was in the window, so I asked if she could please get up so I could occupy my seat.</p> <p>“I noticed that she began scrolling through photos on her mobile phone and stopped at a photograph of an elderly couple. I asked if they were her parents. She smiled and nodded and kept staring at it.”</p> <p>Mr Singh, who had been in Australia to visit family, said that everything seemed fine and the plane eventually began moving towards the runway, ready for take off.</p> <p>He explained that Ms Kaur had then put her phone down and rested her head on the seat in front, when he realised something was not right.</p> <p>“She was wearing her seatbelt and leaned forward to rest her head on the seat in front. As the plane was preparing for takeoff, I wanted to alert her to sit upright,” he shared.</p> <p>“But the plane jerked and I expected her to wake up. But instead, her head just moved towards me."</p> <p>“I got the attention of a flight attention and told her that this woman does not seem very well. She checked her pulse and after that, the reaction of the cabin crew was very commendable."</p> <p>“They tried their best to revive her. She was then evacuated by medical staff.”</p> <p>The retired army officer said the incident still “haunts him” and he wants her parents to know that she “left the world peacefully”. </p> <p>“The incident has been etched in my memory for life,” he said.</p> <p>“It is very difficult to digest that a young girl with whom you were just interacting with has passed away in front of your eyes."</p> <p>“Her innocent face stills haunts me and I want her parents to know she loved them a lot. She left this world peacefully looking at their photograph."</p> <p>“My heart breaks for her family who would have been looking forward to seeing her after a long time.”</p> <p>It is understood that Ms Kaur had been feeling "unwell" when she arrived at the airport and boarded the plane with no issues, with reports suggesting she died of tuberculosis. </p> <p><em>Image credits: news.com.au</em></p>

Caring

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Pioneering TV presenter reveals terminal diagnosis live on air

<p>Popular New Zealand TV presenter Joanna Paul-Robie has revealed she is dying of cancer. The pioneering presenter, known for her work on TV3, shared the heartbreaking news during an interview with Radio New Zealand on Friday morning.</p> <p>Paul-Robie, who has been a beloved figure in the broadcasting world, made the announcement while accepting the Icon Award for her contributions to the creative industries.</p> <p>“I was so touched because this award means so much to me, coming from Tauranga Moana,” she said. “But more importantly, because I am, unfortunately, dying – I have terminal cancer – and really to have this award before one posthumously gets it is an even better break. I can’t tell you the lightness, the brightness, the feeling of aroha inside me last night.”</p> <p>Reflecting on her career, Paul-Robie recounted her experiences as one of the few Māori individuals on New Zealand's television screens. “The newsroom was really … it was being run by mostly a pair of middle-class, middle-aged white men who had the audacity and the balls to say ‘If it bleeds, it leads’ but these guys you know they had never been in a Māori world,” she remarked.</p> <p>Starting her career at Radio New Zealand, Paul-Robie later became a newsreader for TV3 and played a significant role in establishing Māori Television in 2004, serving as a program and production manager.</p> <p>During a 2011 interview with <em>NZOnScreen</em>, she spoke about the challenges and triumphs of setting up the network. “There’s been a handful of people in the world who have built a television station and taken it to air,” she said. “There are only a handful of people in the world who can do that and even though it nearly broke me in half on the day that we launched, I thought ‘hell we did that’. I think it is difficult for someone like me with an A-type personality to think now you have done your big thing maybe you should take it easy now.”</p> <p>Paul-Robie's courage and dedication have left an indelible mark on New Zealand's broadcasting landscape. Her announcement has been met with an outpouring of support and love from colleagues, fans and the wider community, who admire her strength and resilience in the face of such a personal battle.</p> <p><em>Images: <span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">NZOnScreen</span></em></p>

Caring

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"I am the Bicycle Bandit": Terminally-ill ex-cop confesses to 20-year-old mystery

<p>In a startling twist to a 20-year-old mystery, 73-year-old Kym Allen Parsons, a terminally-ill former police officer and firefighter, has admitted to being the notorious "Bicycle Bandit" who terrorised South Australian banks and residents for a decade.</p> <p>Parsons' confession came just days after receiving approval for voluntary assisted dying (VAD) and being provided with a VAD kit by SA Health.</p> <p>Parsons, who has stage 4 cancer and who had previously denied the charges, changed his plea to guilty during a Supreme Court session on Monday, ending years of speculation and investigation. His sudden admission of guilt follows a plea bargain brokered by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and his counsel after the VAD approval was granted.</p> <p>In a tearful apology read to the court, Parsons expressed deep remorse for his actions, acknowledging that his behaviour was both irrational and without excuse.</p> <p>"I have no excuse for my behaviour," he told the court. "My reasoning was illogical and irrational over that time, and over the past 10 years I have tried to rehabilitate, seek help and forgiveness and demonstrate my shame in distressing actions.</p> <p>"I was fearful of confessing my past and destroying their [my wife and family's] love and trust in the person they knew.</p> <p>"I do not expect your forgiveness, and I humbly ask you accept my sincerest apology and deepest remorse."</p> <p>Despite Parsons' request for bail ahead of his sentencing, Justice Sandi McDonald deemed his crimes too severe for continued freedom and ordered his immediate custody. His access to the VAD kit while in custody remains uncertain.</p> <p>The courtroom was filled with Parsons' victims and their supporters, many of whom had worked at the banks he robbed. Some were victimised multiple times. One victim described the lasting impact of being robbed at gunpoint, detailing the immense trauma and the development of an auto-immune disease likely induced by stress. Other victims recounted struggles with PTSD, anxiety, depression, and ongoing trust issues.</p> <p>Parsons had been scheduled for trial in February on charges of armed robbery, attempted armed robbery, and firearms offences, with prosecutors alleging he stole over $250,000 from 11 banks between 2004 and 2014. DNA evidence was cited as a link to the crimes. His guilty plea and impending death are expected to ignite a legal battle over his $2.4 million estate, involving prosecutors, his heirs, and his victims.</p> <p>Previously, Parsons had been granted home detention due to his terminal stage 4 cancer diagnosis, after significant weight loss while in custody. His defence lawyer, James Marcus, stated that Parsons pleaded guilty to provide closure to the victims and their families.</p> <p>Parsons' sentencing is scheduled for June 28, marking the conclusion of a complex and emotional case that has gripped the state for years.</p> <p><em>Images: ABC News / SA Police</em></p>

Legal

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Almost half the men surveyed think they could land a passenger plane. Experts disagree

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/guido-carim-junior-1379129">Guido Carim Junior</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/chris-campbell-1414564">Chris Campbell</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/elvira-marques-1362476">Elvira Marques</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/nnenna-ike-1490692">Nnenna Ike</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tim-ryley-1253269">Tim Ryley</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a></em></p> <p>Picture this: you’re nestled comfortably in your seat cruising towards your holiday destination when a flight attendant’s voice breaks through the silence:</p> <blockquote> <p>Ladies and gentlemen, both pilots are incapacitated. Are there any passengers who could land this plane with assistance from air traffic control?</p> </blockquote> <p>If you think you could manage it, you’re not alone. <a href="https://today.yougov.com/topics/politics/survey-results/daily/2023/01/02/fd798/3">Survey results</a> published in January indicate about one-third of adult Americans think they could safely land a passenger aircraft with air traffic control’s guidance. Among male respondents, the confidence level rose to nearly 50%.</p> <p>Can a person with no prior training simply guide everyone to a smooth touchdown?</p> <p>We’ve all heard stories of passengers who saved the day when the pilot became unresponsive. For instance, last year <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbMoyWukjbs">Darren Harrison</a> managed to land a twin-engine aircraft in Florida – after the pilot passed out – with the guidance of an air traffic controller who also happened to be a flight instructor.</p> <p>However, such incidents tend to take place in small, simple aircraft. Flying a much bigger and heavier commercial jet is a completely different game.</p> <h2>You can’t always rely on autopilot</h2> <p>A pilot spends about 90% of their time monitoring autopilot systems and making sure everything is working as intended. The other 10% is spent managing problems, taxiing, taking off and landing.</p> <p>Takeoffs and landings are arguably the most difficult tasks pilots perform, and are always performed manually. Only on very few occasions, and in a handful of aircraft models, can a pilot use autopilot to land the aircraft for them. This is the exception, and not the rule.</p> <p>For takeoff, the aircraft must build up speed until the wings can generate enough lift to pull it into the air. The pilot must <a href="https://youtu.be/16XTAK-4Xbk?si=66yDo5g5I086Q2y2&amp;t=65">pay close attention</a> to multiple instruments and external cues, while keeping the aircraft centred on the runway until it reaches lift-off speed.</p> <p>Once airborne, they must coordinate with air traffic control, follow a particular path, retract the landing gear and maintain a precise speed and direction while trying to climb.</p> <p>Landing is even more complicated, and requires having precise control of the aircraft’s direction and descent rate.</p> <p><a href="https://youtu.be/u_it9OiTnSM?si=xNZrLB9ZH870LEa3&amp;t=360">To land successfully</a>, a pilot must keep an appropriate speed while simultaneously managing gear and flap configuration, adhering to air traffic regulations, communicating with air traffic control and completing a number of paper and digital checklists.</p> <p>Once the aircraft comes close to the runway, they must accurately judge its height, reduce power and adjust the rate of descent – ensuring they land on the correct area of the runway.</p> <p>On the ground, they will use the brakes and reverse thrust to bring the aircraft to a complete stop before the runway ends. This all happens within just a few minutes.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Nyx4NyMrvOs?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>Both takeoff and landing are far too quick, technical and concentration-intensive for an untrained person to pull off. They also require a range of skills that are only gained through extensive training, such as understanding the information presented on different gauges, and being able to coordinate one’s hands and feet in a certain way.</p> <h2>Training a pilot</h2> <p>The journey from student to commercial pilot is a long one. It normally starts with a recreational licence, followed by a private licence, and then a commercial licence (which allows them to fly professionally).</p> <p>Even before stepping into a cockpit, the student must study aerodynamics, air law and flight rules, meteorology, human factors, navigation, aircraft systems, and performance and flight planning. They also need to spend time learning about the specific aircraft they will be flying.</p> <p>Once the fundamentals are grasped, an instructor takes them for training. Most of this training is conducted in small, lightweight aircraft – with a simulator introduced briefly towards the end.</p> <p>During a lesson, each manoeuvre or action is demonstrated by the instructor before the student attempts it. Their attempt may be adjusted, corrected or even terminated early in critical situations.</p> <p>The first ten to fifteen lessons focus on takeoff, landing, basic in-flight control and emergency management. When the students are ready, they’re allowed to “go solo” – wherein they conduct a complete flight on their own. This is a great milestone.</p> <p>After years of experience, they are ready to transition to a commercial aircraft. At this point they might be able to take off and land reasonably well, but they will still undergo extensive training specific to the aircraft they are flying, including hours of advanced theory, dozens of simulator sessions and hundreds of hours of real aircraft training (most of which is done with passengers onboard).</p> <p>So, if you’ve never even learned the basics of flying, your chances of successfully landing a passenger aircraft with air traffic control’s help are close to zero.</p> <h2>Yet, flying is a skill like any other</h2> <p>Aviation training has been democratised by the advent of high-end computers, virtual reality and flight simulation games such as Microsoft’s <a href="https://www.flightsimulator.com/">Flight Simulator</a> and <a href="https://www.x-plane.com/">X-Plane</a>.</p> <p>Anyone can now rig up a desktop flight simulator for a few thousand dollars. Ideally, such a setup should also include the basic physical controls found in a cockpit, such as a control yoke, throttle quadrant and pedals.</p> <p>Flight simulators provide an immersive environment in which professional pilots, students and aviation enthusiasts can develop their skills. So if you really think you could match-up against a professional, consider trying your hand at one.</p> <p>You almost certainly won’t be able to land an actual passenger plane by the end of it – but at least you’ll gain an appreciation for the immense skill pilots possess.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/218037/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/guido-carim-junior-1379129"><em>Guido Carim Junior</em></a><em>, Senior Lecturer in Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/chris-campbell-1414564">Chris Campbell</a>, Adjunct Associate Professor, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/elvira-marques-1362476">Elvira Marques</a>, Aviation PhD candidate, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/nnenna-ike-1490692">Nnenna Ike</a>, Research Assistant, Griffith Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tim-ryley-1253269">Tim Ryley</a>, Professor and Head of Griffith Aviation, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: </em><em>Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/almost-half-the-men-surveyed-think-they-could-land-a-passenger-plane-experts-disagree-218037">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Travel Trouble

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Singapore airline passenger's emotional text mid-turbulence

<p>A mum has revealed the terrifying text she received from her son while he was on board Singapore Airlines flight that <a href="https://www.oversixty.co.nz/travel/travel-trouble/victim-identified-after-plane-hits-deadly-turbulence" target="_blank" rel="noopener">plunged 6,000 feet</a> in a matter of minutes. </p> <p>As turbulence hit the plane 11 hours into its journey from London to Singapore, Josh Barker sent what he thought would be his final text to his mum at 9.10am on May 21. </p> <p>“I don’t want to scare you, but I’m on a crazy flight. The plane is making an emergency landing… I love you all," his text read. </p> <p>His mother, Alison recalled the most "terrifying" two hours of her life after receiving the text, as she waited to hear from her son who was en route to Bali. </p> <p>“It was terrifying. I didn’t know what was going on,” she told <em>BBC</em>. </p> <p>"We didn't know whether he'd survived, it was so nerve wracking. It was the longest two hours of my life.</p> <p>"It was awful; it was petrifying."</p> <p>She said that while her son was lucky to have survived the incident, he was still in “a lot of pain” having sustained minor injuries to his teeth. </p> <p>The aircraft was hit by "severe turbulence" 11 hours into the 13-hour flight to Singapore and was forced to make an emergency landing in Bangkok, Thailand. </p> <p>71 people were left injured, and one man, British grandfather Geoffrey Kitchen passed away after suffering a heart attack when the turbulence hit. </p> <p>Of the 211 passengers on board, 56 were Australians and 23 were from New Zealand. </p> <p>Singapore Airlines CEO Goh Choon Phong has issued a public apology for the incident in a video message saying that the airline is cooperating with investigations. </p> <p>"We are deeply saddened by this incident. It has resulted in one confirmed fatality, and multiple injuries," he said.</p> <p>"On behalf of Singapore Airlines, I would like to express my deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of the deceased.</p> <p>"We are very sorry for the traumatic experience that everyone on board SQ321 went through... our deepest apologies to everyone affected by this incident."</p> <p>He also said that 143 people who had been on the flight had been taken to Singapore this morning, while the remaining 85 - including six crew members - were still in the Thai capital. </p> <p>"Singapore Airlines swiftly dispatched a team to Bangkok last night, and they have been helping our colleagues with the support on the ground," he said.</p> <p>"A relief flight with 143 of the SQ321 passengers and crew members who were able to travel landed in Singapore this morning at 5.05am.</p> <p>"Another 79 passengers and six crew members are still in Bangkok.</p> <p>"This includes the injured who are receiving medical treatment, as well as their families and loved ones who were on the flight.</p> <p>"Singapore Airlines will continue to extend all possible support to them."</p> <p><em>Images: X/ news.com.au</em></p> <p> </p>

Travel Trouble

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"Not going to save anybody": Exit row passenger prompts plane evacuation

<p>A whole plane has been forced to disembark after a woman seated in the exit row refused to comply with safety instructions. </p> <p>Passengers were up in arms when they had to leave the plane, after the woman was overheard telling cabin crew that she would only save herself in the event of an emergency, before yelling at flight attendants. </p> <p>The interaction, which was captured by another passenger on video and posted to TikTok, shows the woman becoming heated while talking to cabin crew on the Frontier flight. </p> <p>The passenger can then be seen and heard progressively raising her voice to cabin crew, with fellow flyers pleading with the woman to disembark the plane.</p> <p>The traveller who filmed the altercation claims the woman said she was “not going to save anybody” when seated in the exit row, saying the disgruntled passenger had “attitude” and went on to say that if something were to happen, she would “only save” herself. </p> <p>“That was her attitude throughout the seating process. And I already knew something was about to pop off when she had that attitude,” the TikTok user said.</p> <p>The altercation only became more heated as the yelling progressed, before police eventually arrived on the plane to escort the woman off. </p> <p>The video then shows another Frontier employee approach the passenger and say, “I’m gonna ask you one more time, nicely, to get off, if not, we’re going to deboard the plane and police will come and escort you off.”</p> <p>When the cabin crew make repeated futile attempts to get through the woman, the pilot came down from the cockpit to try and call for calm. </p> <p>“You’re inconveniencing everybody else,” the pilot can be heard saying to the woman. as the pair continue to exchange words while he repeatedly points toward the front of the plane.</p> <p>Following the failed attempts, two police officers then make their way down the aisle and towards the passenger. </p> <p>Towards the end of the five-minute video, which has been viewed more than 80,000 times, all the passengers on board the flight were filmed disembarking the aircraft while the passenger at the centre of the ordeal exits with police from a separate door onto the tarmac.</p> <p>It is unclear if charges were laid.</p> <p><em>Image credits: TikTok</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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“My darling wife": Newlywed's tragic death overseas

<p>Madison Noronha (née Chatham) was in Amsterdam with her husband Kyle Noronha after only a few weeks of getting married when she suddenly collapsed on the street. </p> <p>When she was rushed to hospital last week, scans revealed that she had suffered a brain aneurysm and despite getting immediate surgery to relieve the pressure, she unfortunately <span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">could</span><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;"> not be saved. </span></p> <p>“Madi fought like she always does right to the very end,” her heartbroken husband wrote on social media. </p> <p>She passed away in his arms and was surrounded by loved ones. </p> <p>“My darling wife I cannot comprehend what has happened, I’m in a million pieces. Forever and always babe.”</p> <p>Now, her family have set up a <a href="https://www.gofundme.com/f/madison-noronha-chatham" target="_blank" rel="noopener">GoFundMe</a> in attempt to raise funds to “help with flights, funeral costs and to help bring our beloved Madison home to be laid to rest”.</p> <p>Since the launch of the fundraiser, people have come together and raised over $30,000 for the family. </p> <p>Taylah Wicks, the organiser of the fundraiser and a family friend, said that Madison was loved and cherished beyond measure”.</p> <p>“We are all left heart broken, but can’t imagine the pain that Kyle and her immediate family are experiencing,” she wrote on the page.</p> <p><em>Image: GoFundMe</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Flight attendant reveals what happens if a passenger dies onboard

<p dir="ltr">A flight attendant has revealed what happens if a passenger dies onboard, and the morbid reason the protocol has changed in recent years. </p> <p dir="ltr">Mandy Smith has been a flight attendant for 12 years and thankfully, hasn’t had to encounter such a tragedy during one of her flights.</p> <p dir="ltr">According to the protocol of the airline she serves, previously when passengers passed away on board they used to be put inside the bathrooms, but now their bodies are laid across the front seats. </p> <p dir="ltr">She explained to <em>LadBible</em>, “This has not happened to me, thankfully. It happened to a friend of mine, where they had a passenger pass away on the flight.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“Now, we used to have to put passengers in the bathrooms, and then lock the bathrooms off. But because they would be seated on the toilet, as they sat there - if rigour mortis set in - then they would be then stuck in that position, and they wouldn't be able to fit in their coffin.”</p> <p dir="ltr">'So, unfortunately, now, we have to lay them across the front of the seats and try and calm their loved ones down, treat them with respect, cover them with blankets, and maybe just cordon the area off with blankets tucked into the overheads, which is what I would probably do.'</p> <p dir="ltr">Mandy also explained that according to different laws, if someone dies on a flight, cabin crew officially have to keep going to their final destination.</p> <p dir="ltr">She said, “If they passed away on board, it's the law that we, as cabin crew, have to keep going. So, we have to keep doing any kind of resuscitation until they're deemed to be deceased.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“So, if it was an accident that happened on board, or if they had a heart attack, we would then just keep going doing CPR.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“But if it was someone who passed away from natural causes, or another kind of ailment, then obviously, we wouldn't need to do anything to them then.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“We'd need to contact the ground services to be met by an ambulance or the coroner. We wouldn't really do it as an emergency landing, we'd just treat it as a normal landing if that person's definitely passed away.”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: YouTube </em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Terminal lucidity: why do loved ones with dementia sometimes ‘come back’ before death?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/yen-ying-lim-355185">Yen Ying Lim</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/diny-thomson-1519736">Diny Thomson</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a></em></p> <p>Dementia is often described as “the long goodbye”. Although the person is still alive, dementia slowly and irreversibly chips away at their memories and the qualities that make someone “them”.</p> <p>Dementia eventually takes away the person’s ability to communicate, eat and drink on their own, understand where they are, and recognise family members.</p> <p>Since as early as the <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21764150/">19th century</a>, stories from loved ones, caregivers and health-care workers have described some people with dementia suddenly becoming lucid. They have described the person engaging in meaningful conversation, sharing memories that were assumed to have been lost, making jokes, and even requesting meals.</p> <p>It is estimated <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20010032/">43% of people</a> who experience this brief lucidity die within 24 hours, and 84% within a week.</p> <p>Why does this happen?</p> <h2>Terminal lucidity or paradoxical lucidity?</h2> <p>In 2009, researchers Michael Nahm and Bruce Greyson coined the term “<a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21764150/">terminal lucidity</a>”, since these lucid episodes often occurred shortly before death.</p> <p>But not all lucid episodes indicate death is imminent. <a href="https://alz-journals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/alz.13667">One study</a> found many people with advanced dementia will show brief glimmers of their old selves more than six months before death.</p> <p>Lucidity has also been <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167494311001865?via%3Dihub">reported</a> in other conditions that affect the brain or thinking skills, such as meningitis, schizophrenia, and in people with brain tumours or who have sustained a brain injury.</p> <p>Moments of lucidity that do not necessarily indicate death are sometimes called <a href="https://alz-journals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/alz.12579">paradoxical lucidity</a>. It is considered paradoxical as it defies the expected course of neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia.</p> <p>But it’s important to note these episodes of lucidity are temporary and sadly do not represent a reversal of neurodegenerative disease.</p> <h2>Why does terminal lucidity happen?</h2> <p>Scientists have struggled to explain why terminal lucidity happens. Some episodes of lucidity have been reported to occur in the presence of loved ones. Others have reported that <a href="https://psywb.springeropen.com/articles/10.1186/s13612-014-0024-5">music can sometimes improve lucidity</a>. But many episodes of lucidity do not have a distinct trigger.</p> <p><a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0300957223002162">A research team from New York University</a> speculated that changes in brain activity before death may cause terminal lucidity. But this doesn’t fully explain why people suddenly recover abilities that were assumed to be lost.</p> <p>Paradoxical and terminal lucidity are also very difficult to study. Not everyone with advanced dementia will experience episodes of lucidity before death. Lucid episodes are also unpredictable and typically occur without a particular trigger.</p> <p>And as terminal lucidity can be a joyous time for those who witness the episode, it would be unethical for scientists to use that time to conduct their research. At the time of death, it’s also difficult for scientists to interview caregivers about any lucid moments that may have occurred.</p> <p>Explanations for terminal lucidity extend beyond science. These moments of mental clarity may be a way for the dying person to say final goodbyes, gain closure before death, and reconnect with family and friends. Some believe episodes of terminal lucidity are representative of the person connecting with an afterlife.</p> <h2>Why is it important to know about terminal lucidity?</h2> <p>People can have a variety of reactions to seeing terminal lucidity in a person with advanced dementia. While some will experience it as being peaceful and bittersweet, others may find it deeply confusing and upsetting. There may also be an urge to modify care plans and request lifesaving measures for the dying person.</p> <p>Being aware of terminal lucidity can help loved ones understand it is part of the dying process, acknowledge the person with dementia will not recover, and allow them to make the most of the time they have with the lucid person.</p> <p>For those who witness it, terminal lucidity can be a final, precious opportunity to reconnect with the person that existed before dementia took hold and the “long goodbye” began.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/202342/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/yen-ying-lim-355185"><em>Yen Ying Lim</em></a><em>, Associate Professor, Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/diny-thomson-1519736">Diny Thomson</a>, PhD (Clinical Neuropsychology) Candidate and Provisional Psychologist, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/terminal-lucidity-why-do-loved-ones-with-dementia-sometimes-come-back-before-death-202342">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Mind

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“Is that Snoop Dog?!”: Man caught with fake passenger in carpool lane

<p>A US motorist has been handed a traffic infringement after police found him using a dummy to drive in the carpool lane. </p> <p>Not only did his hilarious attempt to bypass morning traffic with the fake passenger whose goatee was "just a little too sharp" get him fined, he helped authorities answer the common question: “If I have a mannequin in the passenger seat, does that count as a second occupant in the vehicle? </p> <p>"The answer is simple… NO."</p> <p>According to an Instagram post shared by the California Highway Patrol Santa Fe Spring, authorities stopped the unnamed driver for crossing a double line when they noticed the plastic passenger. </p> <p>"Officer Kaplan made an enforcement stop on this vehicle for crossing solid double lines only to realise the driver was the only occupant in the vehicle with their plastic friend," they wrote. </p> <p>The mannequin in question had a human-like mask, sported a hoodie and sunglasses, and was seated upright with his seatbelt buckled in just like any other passenger. </p> <p>And he would've gotten away with it too if it weren't for the fake facial hair. </p> <p>"The goatee was sharp … just a little too sharp," they shared. </p> <p>"We've gotta give it to them, the appearance is next-level modelling but at the end of the day ... plastic is plastic." </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/C6K7Thkr2CO/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/C6K7Thkr2CO/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by CHP Santa Fe Springs (@chp_santa_fe_springs)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The driver was issued with a number of citations for carpool violations, but many online commenters shared their amusement at the light-hearted nature of the traffic violation. </p> <p>"Is that snoop dog?!" wrote one commenter. </p> <p>"Leave Stevie wonder alone," joked another. </p> <p>"I really don’t see a problem here because most people are fake and have lots of plastic on them anyways," quipped a third. </p> <p><em>Image: Instagram</em></p> <p> </p>

Legal

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"A little bit steep": Jetstar passenger hit with "wild" excess baggage fee

<p>A Jetstar passenger has been slapped with a "wild" excess baggage fee after her luggage was less than just one kilogram overweight. </p> <p>Monique McCreanor was flying from Melbourne to Sydney after competing in a fitness competition when she was hit with the unexpected fees. </p> <p>Travelling with only carry-on luggage, Ms. McCreanor said she made a mad dash to the airport to catch her flight, only to be stopped at the gate due to the weight of her bag.</p> <p>Because of the prizes she won at the competition, her bag was just 900g over the 7kg limit, and she was issued a $75 fine.</p> <p>Ms. McCreanor took to TikTok to share a warning with other travellers to triple check the weight of your bag, as even being over the limit by mere grams will set you back. </p> <p>“This isn’t a complaint, this is merely just warning you guys,” she said in the clip. </p> <p>“If you do fly with Jetstar on a domestic flight, and your bag is even 100g overweight, you’re going to get charged $75 at the gate for that excess luggage."</p> <p>“Now, this kind of sucks, because I’m like damn, I could have had 15kg in this bag to really make it worthwhile."</p> <p>“I got hit with $75, so just make sure are booking the extra checked baggage, it is better to be safe than sorry, because $75 is a little bit steep for just 900g overweight.”</p> <p>While her video quickly garnered thousands of views, many were left divided in the comments about her complaints. </p> <p>One person sided with the airline, saying, “No sorry, it clearly gives a weight allowance. You went over, you pay.”</p> <p>“Seriously it doesn’t matter who you are with, you will have to pay any way, they are the rules,” another added.</p> <p>Others were quick to empathise, sharing their own experience of encountering excess baggage fees.</p> <p>“They did this to me on my honeymoon... I was p****d,” one person said.</p> <p><em>Image credits: TikTok</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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The key decision that led to cruise passengers being abandoned by ship

<p>A group of travellers, including two Australians, have been left stranded in Africa after their cruise ship allegedly refused to let them board the ship after a day trip. </p> <p>Eight passengers were among the many cruisers who disembarked the Norwegian Dawn at São Tomé and Príncipe, an island nation of 220,000 people off the west coast of Africa in the Gulf of Guinea, last Wednesday. </p> <p>The group of eight passengers took off on a private day tour, that reportedly wasn't organised through the cruise company. </p> <p>Things turned sour when the group were delayed on their day trip, with their tour operator allegedly connecting with the captain to tell the cruise the eight passengers would arrive later than their 3pm curfew. </p> <p>When the group arrived to the port, the ship was still anchored, but American couple Jill and Jay Campbell said the captain allegedly refused to let them on board.</p> <p>According to cruise ship lawyer Spencer Aonfeld, the group's big mistake was not booking the tour through the cruise company, as private tours come with a huge risk. </p> <p>Weighing into the drama on TikTok, Mr Aonfeld said, “Eight passengers were left behind when their cruise ship left them because they were delayed in an excursion apparently conducted without buying it directly through Norwegian."</p> <p>“These passengers include elderly passengers, one apparently a paraplegic, one has a heart condition, they don't have their medication, money, passports, cell phones and other things — they’re just left behind."</p> <p>“That unfortunately, according to Norwegian and me is, one of the consequences you pay when you buy your excursions from someone other than the cruise line."</p> <p>“Now they’re left there having to come up with the means to travel back to the next port or home and forfeit the remaining potion of their cruise. Imagine trying to do that in Africa without a passport, money or medication — we wish them the very best.”</p> <p>In order to rejoin the cruise and be reunited with their valuables, the group is now trekking to a port in Senegal, where the cruise is set to dock on Tuesday. </p> <p>In a statement, Norwegian Cruise Lines said it was “in communication with the guests,” and was providing them with “additional information” to rejoin the cruise. </p> <p>“While this is a very unfortunate situation, guests are responsible for ensuring they return to the ship at the published time, which is communicated broadly over the ship’s intercom, in the daily communication and posted just before exiting the vessel,” NCL said in a statement.</p> <p>The company said it was “working closely with the local authorities” on how the guests might re-join the ship. </p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images / WRAL North Carolina </em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Pilot pitches in to free passenger stuck in plane bathroom

<p>A pilot has been forced to abandon his post at the cockpit to rescue a passenger trapped in the bathroom of a plane. </p> <p>While onboard a Delta Airlines flight from Salt Lake City to New Orleans, a father of two named Brent became stuck in the bathroom for 35 minutes during the short domestic flight. </p> <p>When it was discovered that Brent was not breaking out of the bathroom by himself, the cabin crew, including the pilot, stepped in to free the 34-year-old dad. </p> <p>After being refused a refund by the airline's customer service, Brent's dissatisfied partner shared a video of the moment the staff all rallied to heave the door open. </p> <p>Recounting the tale on Reddit, the woman suggested that her husband had fled to the bathroom to have a break from his two young kids. </p> <p>She wrote, "After 5 minutes, I wondered what was going on. Was he using this time as a much-needed break from my children’s whiney demands and frequent tantrums? I didn’t blame him."</p> <p>Brent's partner went on to explain that it wasn't until she heard another passenger say the word "stuck" did she realise her husband's predicament. </p> <p>She turned around to see two members of the crew yanking at the door to the rear cubicle as she watched on while she kept one eye on her young kids. </p> <p>The flight attendants enlisted the help of a male passenger who also failed to provide the magic touch, before the pilot emerged, 20 minutes into the ordeal, to have a go.</p> <p><iframe title="YouTube video player" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZWOyr4J2OBo?si=FSdSkXFv4WlClKXB" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <aside> <p>"It wasn't until Brent kicked the hell out of the door while the pilot was pulling as hard as possible that Brent finally made his escape," she wrote. </p> <p>Finishing off the post, the woman concluded that Delta asked her not to share the footage, filmed by another passenger who was closer to the end of the plane, but after not receiving a refund for their "terrible" journey, the mother decided to post them online. </p> <p>The post racked up hundreds of comments, with many people actually siding with the airline for not issuing a refund, suggesting that the author's response was not proportionate to what actually happened. </p> <p><em>Image credits: Reddit</em></p> </aside>

Travel Trouble

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Mistake in email causes Virgin Australia passenger to miss flight

<p>A Virgin Australia passenger was left $800 out of pocket after he arrived at a closed check-in desk despite arriving well before the departure time, and he now believes that it's because of a mistake in the email he received from the airline. </p> <p>Max Cameron, 64, flies several times a week between Launceston airport in Tasmania and Melbourne for work, and received an email from the airline saying his flight was delayed back in January. </p> <p>"I got a text and an email from Virgin saying, very sorry to let you know your plane has been delayed by 45 minutes,"  he told <em>Yahoo News Australia</em>. </p> <p>The email also read "Check-in will now close 30 minutes prior to this time."</p> <p>"I thought, well done Virgin. You've come through… you've let me know when I have to be there. And as a result, I got out to the airport at 9:25pm for a 9:45pm closure of check-in," Cameron said. </p> <p>However when he arrived there was "literally not one person in the Virgin terminal,"  so he eventually had to leave, with no choice but to buy another flight ticket which cost him $800 including extra accommodation and transport costs. </p> <p>"I put my tail between the legs, went back and bought another ticket. I was very annoyed about that but I had no choice... check-in closed early," he said.</p> <p>After submitting an enquiry to the customer service team, they told him he had to arrive 30 minutes before the <em>original</em> departure time - a different instruction to what he received in the email, with the revised departure time. </p> <p>At the time, the enquiry was closed and the team said he would not receive any compensation. </p> <p>Cameron, who was unsatisfied with the response, then spoke to a supervisor at the airport, who told him: "Oh my God, it looks like they sent you the wrong email".</p> <p>According to Yahoo News Australia, Cameron reportedly did receive incorrect information which led him to miss his flight. </p> <p>Cameron has since been in touch with the airline and hopes to be reimbursed, but remains "unhappy" after what he had to go through. </p> <p>"It's not the money but the lack of accountability... there is no service mentality anymore," he said.</p> <p>"What Virgin has done to me is just so wrong".</p> <p><em style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 16px; vertical-align: baseline; color: #323338; font-family: Figtree, Roboto, 'Noto Sans Hebrew', 'Noto Kufi Arabic', 'Noto Sans JP', sans-serif; background-color: #ffffff; outline: none !important;">Images: Yahoo News / Getty</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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"I'm lowkey dying": Brave young woman with terminal illness shares her final wish

<p>Samantha Bulloch was given three years to live after she was diagnosed with gut-wrenching stage four bowel cancer at the young age of 28. </p> <p>A year later, Bulloch has shared a heartfelt plea on social media in hopes of meeting her idol- pop star Taylor Swift. </p> <p>The Swiftie has scored a ticket to Taylor's final show in Sydney on the 26th of February, but she’s calling on “anyone to hook a sister up” so she can meet-and-greet the singer backstage. </p> <p>“I’m low key dying and honestly this would just make my year,” she said in a video shared to TikTok. </p> <p>“I’m going out on a limb here so I’m just shooting my shot and we’re going to see what happens.</p> <p>“If anyone has any connections... I would love you forever.”</p> <p>Bulloch has been a fan of the megastar since she was 15 years old. </p> <p>“Taylor means so much to me, and I’d love the opportunity to tell her just how much of an impact she’s made on my life,” she told <em>7Life</em>. </p> <p>“I’ve loved her since I was 15, and her music has seen me through so many chapters in my life — including this one.</p> <p>“I love that her music transcends all kinds of walks of life, and so many of us connect with it so personally, despite the differences in our situations.</p> <p>“She has a real talent for making you feel less alone.I recently got a new tattoo of the lyric, ‘For the hope of it all’, from her song called August.</p> <p>“I adopted that lyric during my experience with cancer. I’m choosing to live for the hope of it all.”</p> <p>As she faces terminal cancer, Bulloch said that she is determined to live the rest of her life to the fullest. </p> <p>"I’m hoping and praying for many more years than what I’ve been given. But if not, I intend to try and maximise these few I’ve got left to the best of my ability," she said. </p> <p>“Thankfully I’ve always been quite a positive and hopeful person, and that hasn’t left me during this experience.”</p> <p>Bulloch was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2023, after experiencing low iron levels, fatigue and blood in her stool. </p> <p>She is currently on a chemotherapy regime and an immunotherapy drug and added that she also hopes to tick off many of her bucket list destinations this year, including visiting UK, Paris, New York and Tasmania. </p> <p>“My doctor has said I can, providing the treatment I’m on now works," the hopeful 29-year-old said. </p> <p>“Thankfully treatment has been working so hopefully in a few months I’ll be able to do that."</p> <p><em>Images: Samantha Bulloch </em></p>

Caring

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"We want answers": Furious cruise passengers stage protest after itinerary change

<p>Passengers onboard a Norwegian Cruise Line voyage has expressed their outrage after their once in a lifetime trip to Antarctica changed course after the journey had already begun. </p> <p>Melbourne woman Helen Midler was one of hundreds of people onboard the cruise from Buenos Aires to mainland Antarctica, when staff informed all travellers that their itinerary had changed. </p> <p>Days into their journey, those onboard were told they would not be visiting Antarctica at all, but would be doing a "South America round trip" instead.</p> <p>Midler took to social media to share her frustrations, saying the communication between the cruise line and the passengers was very poor. </p> <p>She explained that she only found out about the change after checking the app a few days into the journey and noticed the name of the cruise had been changed.</p> <p>Passengers were later told the change of destination was for "operational reasons" after raising their concerns, however no further explanation was given.</p> <p>Those onboard were allegedly told the decision was made by the head office in the US to not visit Paradise Bay, on mainland Antarctica, before departure on January 31, and that all passengers were notified by email, and again at check-in.</p> <p>However, Midler claims this was not the case.</p> <p>"I can assure you that we never got any email and many of our friends here on board, and I'm talking hundreds of people we know, did not receive any email either," she said in a video posted online.</p> <p>"Until the cruise had commenced, most people on this ship were not aware of the change in the itinerary."</p> <p>Midler said "everyone was angry", with hundreds of passengers meeting at in the ship's foyer one morning in protest to demand further answers from the crew. </p> <p>"Customer service are refusing to acknowledge us, they sent a security officer out to calm us down," she said while standing in the noisy crowd. "We feel we're being cheated, being scammed".</p> <p>Midler said frustrated travellers, some of whom "spent their live savings" on the cruise that costs upwards of $4,000 per person, just "want answers, transparency and clarity" but claims they're being treated with "absolute disdain and disrespect" with little explanation given.</p> <p>"Everyone on this ship has paid a lot of money to cruise to Antarctica, not to do a round trip of South America at sea," she fumed. "We are being dismissed, ignored, refused answers. They're telling us we just have to accept it.</p> <p>"They think we're idiots. We're not idiots and we're not prepared to just accept this sitting down," she continued. "We may not get to Antarctica. The chances of this cruise now going to Antarctica are minimal. But we want answers."</p> <p>In the days after her initial post, Midler updated her online followers and said those onboard were trying to make the best of a bad situation, despite still not hearing any clear answers about the change of itinerary. </p> <p>"We saved and we booked this two years ago for the trip of a lifetime," she said. "We're feeling very disappointed and dejected about the outcomes here."</p> <p>"We'll never be able to afford to do this again. And we've lost that trip to the Antarctica mainland that we had all been hoping and waiting for, and that we'd paid for. But we're going to try and do our best to enjoy it."</p> <p><em>Image credits: TikTok</em></p>

Legal

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Backlash after airline starts weighing passengers

<p>Finnair has announced that they will start weighing passengers and their luggage, as part of their latest data collection. </p> <p>The flagship airline for Finland has copped some backlash following this move, which they claim is designed to improve balance calculations which will enhance flight safety, according to the<em> NY Post</em>. </p> <p>“Finnair will collect data by weighing volunteering customers and their carry-on baggage at the departure gate,” according to a statement from the company. </p> <p>“The weighing is voluntary and anonymous, and the data will only be used to optimise Finnair’s current aircraft balance calculations.”</p> <p>The airline said that weighing passengers would help ensure that they wouldn't exceed the set maximum weight that a plane can bear before take off. </p> <p>“We use the weighing data for the average calculations required for the safe operation of flights, and the collected data is not linked in any way to the customer’s personal data,” head of Finnair’s ground processes, Satu Munnukka said. </p> <p>Munnukka also said that the airline won't ask for the passengers name or booking number. </p> <p>Many were left shocked by the move taking to X, formerly known as Twitter, to voice their fury. </p> <p>“#Finair are to start weighing their passengers? Have I read that correctly? I am utterly shocked! And disgusted,” wrote one person. </p> <p>“I will not be travelling via @Finair as I won’t be #fatshamed by a bloody airline. Am I alone? (ie I never weight myself: my choice)" another person tweeted. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">What do you make of this one then?</p> <p>An airline has announced it will begin weighing passengers with their carry-on luggage in order to better estimate the plane's weight before take-off.</p> <p>The controversial move comes from Finnish carrier Finnair, who told media they began… <a href="https://t.co/EqEyTQXROG">pic.twitter.com/EqEyTQXROG</a></p> <p>— Darren Grimes (@darrengrimes_) <a href="https://twitter.com/darrengrimes_/status/1755276929853231333?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">February 7, 2024</a></p></blockquote> <p>This comes after Air New Zealand announced that they too will weigh passengers travelling internationally in May last year. </p> <p>“We weigh everything that goes on the aircraft – from the cargo to the meals on-board, to the luggage in the hold,” Alastair James, Air New Zealand load control improvement specialist, said at the time. </p> <p>“For customers, crew and cabin bags, we use average weights, which we get from doing this survey.”</p> <p>Finnair joins Korean Air, Hawaiian Air, Uzbekistan Airways and Air New Zealand in the group of airlines that are weighing their customers. </p> <p><em>Image: Getty/ X</em></p> <p> </p>

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