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Archives: Aug. 2007

Aug.
30th

New aircraft mechanics for Boeing imported from Kansas

The pace of work on Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliner as well as on its 747 and 777 widebodies has created a demand for experienced machinists that Boeing can’t fill immediately in the Puget Sound area.


So the company is seeking volunteers from its Wichita, Kan. plant where work is a bit slack now.


The company is proposing to relocate 60 to 80 experienced machinists for one to three months until the crush of activity is under control at its Everett plant.


The company reportedly has been borrowing mechanics from its 747 and 777 assembly lines to do

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Aug.
30th

$3 billion order for Boeing

Add 42 more Boeing 737-800s to Boeing’s 2007 order tally.


Low-fare carrier Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA ordered that many, worth $3.1 billion at list prices, from Boeing today.



The carrier also took purchase rights for an additional 42 737s. The airline has already put 11 737-800s in its fleet using leased aircraft.


The Oslo-headquartered airline’s 737s will all be equipped with optional blended winglets to improve performance and economy.


The Norwegian orders comes at a time when analysts are predicting a shakeout among European low-fare carriers. The continent has

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Aug.
29th

Add Heathrow airport to the reasons why Boeing is right about the 787

When Boeing said travelers will prefer direct long-distance flights on smaller planes such as its new 787 rather than connecting through a hub, the company must have had London’s Heathrow Airport in mind.

It’s been a couple of years since I had transited London’s Heathrow Airport, so I hadn’t seen firsthand why travelers have been rating it one of the world’s worst.

Just this week we connected at Heathrow to and from Spain. We lost our baggage both coming and going. The airline simply shrugged its shoulders and blamed the luggage disconnect on congestion and understaffing at Heathrow, the world’s third busiest airport.

As the airport has grown to accommodate an increasing number of passengers and flights, it has grown helter skelter: a new wing here, an addition there. Parts of the terminal were built in the ’40s, others in the ’90s. There seems to be no logic as to how the terminal grew. If the airport needed 10 more gates, they were added in any available space even it meant putting two dogleg hallways and two changes of elevation into the walk from the central area to the gates.

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Aug.
29th

Boeing’s 777 wins milestone order

Brazil’s TAM Airlines today ordered four more Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, taking total orders for the 777 family of aircraft over the 1,000 mark.


With the TAM orders, Boeing now has orders from 1,003 777s since the first order came in 1990.


Boeing has received 100 orders for the 777 in 2007. With the order for four additional 777s, TAM now has eight 777s on order with Boeing.


The order is especially significant for Boeing because TAM had been an all-Airbus airline before the 777 orders.

Aug.
29th

Sleuthing for missing pieces of Elks lodge

In today’s column, I described some flourishes stolen from over the years from inside the 1916 Elks lodge in downtown Tacoma.

Preservation architect Jeff Ryan found some windows and railings this month in two local antique shops. Ryan provided the following photographs from his files – some he took and some from the Tacoma Public Library’s historical records – to help identify some of the missing pieces.

In this 1939 photograph of a dance in the banquet room, you can see the chandelier style and get a peek at part of the exit sign behind the pillar.

One of the exit signs showed up at Sanford & Son Antiques just down Broadway from the Elks Lodge. Ryan took this photograph of it.

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Aug.
29th

Grocery workers approve contract

This from The Associated Press:


A union representing about 20,000 grocery and retail workers in the Puget Sound region has overwhelmingly approved a three-year contract, according to results announced late Tuesday night.


The agreement, approved by 92 percent of those voting, covers cashiers, grocery workers and meat department employees at Safeway, Albertsons, Fred Meyer and QFC stores in the region. The contract agreement came earlier this month following five months of negotiations over sticking points including wages, scheduling and sick leave.


The previous contract expired May 5.


The three main companies involved in the negotiations were

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Aug.
29th

Tainted spinach recalled

The Associated Press reports that a California produce company recalled bagged fresh spinach Wednesday after it tested positive for salmonella.


There were no immediate reports of illness linked to the tainted spinach, distributed by Metz Fresh LLC of King City, Calif.


The recall comes nearly a year after an outbreak of another pathogen, E. coli, in fresh spinach killed three people and sickened another 200, according to The Associated Press.


The recalled spinach was distributed throughout the 48 states and Canada and sold in both retail and food service packages. It covers 8,118 cases of spinach,

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Aug.
29th

Port pegs costs of development at $812 million

The Port of Tacoma estimates three new marine terminals on the east side of Blair Waterway and the infrastructure to support them will cost about $812 million over the next decade.


It’s a figure that includes the $300 million the port will spend to build a container terminal for NYK Line, as well the cost of moving TOTE up the waterway and building rail yards and roads.


Port of Tacoma Executive Director Tim Farrell said the port will finance the construction projects through its revenue and bonds.


He also repeated a statement that he and

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