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US gas stations run out of fuel

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The cyberattack on one of America’s Colonial Pipeline is starting to impact consumers and businesses across the United States.

Gas stations across the US have begun reporting fuel shortages, primarily because of what analysts say is being caused on unwarranted panic-buying among drivers.

Panicked drivers have been seen banking up their cars in long lines at petrol stations across America’s East Coast, as they rushed to fill their cars amid fear supply could soon temporarily run out.

The pipeline supplies the East Coast of America with about 45 percent of its fuel but has now been offline for four days after a cyber attack.

The Governments Response

Government officials have acted swiftly to waive safety and environmental rules to speed the delivery of fuel by truck, ship or rail to motorists and airports, even as they sought to assure the public that there was no cause for alarm.

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In some good news, a large part of the pipeline has now resumed operations manually and Colonial hopes that it will begin restarting most of its operations by the end of the week, US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said.

Motorists may still feel a crunch because it takes a few days to ramp up operations, but she said there is no reason to panic-buy fuel.

“We know that we have gasoline; we just have to get it to the right places”

S&P’s Oil Price Information Service put the number of gas stations encountering shortages at more than 1,000.

Why the country’s biggest fuel pipeline system has shutdown:

One of the United States’ major fuel pipeline operators has shut its entire network following a cyber attack that involved ransomware.

Colonial Pipeline, the source of nearly half of the US east coast’s fuel supply, said they had engaged a cyber security firm to help the investigation and contacted law enforcement and federal agencies after the attack.

The biggest U.S. gasoline pipeline won’t resume full operations for at least several more days due to a ransomware cyberattack blamed on a shadowy criminal network called DarkSide.

The attack on the Colonial Pipeline is one of the most disruptive digital ransom schemes ever reported.

The cyber attack on one of America’s Colonial Pipeline is starting to impact consumers and businesses across the United States.

Gas stations across the US have begun reporting fuel shortages, primarily because of what analysts say is being caused on unwarranted panic-buying among drivers.

Panicked drivers have been seen banking up their cars in long lines at petrol stations across America’s East Coast, as they rushed to fill their cars amid fear supply could soon temporarily run out.

The pipeline supplies the East Coast of America with about 45 percent of its fuel but has now been offline for four days after a cyber attack.

North Carolina issues State of Emergency due to fuel supply issues

North Carolina governor Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency to help ensure adequate supplies are delivered.

“Today’s emergency declaration will help North Carolina prepare for any potential motor vehicle fuel supply interruptions across the state and ensure motorists are able to have access to fuel” 

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper speaks during a briefing at the Emergency Operations Center in Raleigh, N.C., Tuesday, June 2, 2020. (Ethan Hyman/The News & Observer via AP)

Aviation Impact

American Airlines says it has been impacted by the shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline

The airline says it has added a stop on two long-haul flights out of Charlotte North Carolina, because of a fuel supply shortage due to the recent colonial pipeline outage

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The airline set to fire unvaccinated aircrew and pilots

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As the coronavirus vaccine rollout ramps up within many nations around the world, many aviation industry experts say the jab will play a huge role in bringing aviation back to normal

Cathay Pacific Airways has confirmed that all Hong Kong-based pilots and flight attendants would need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by August 31st or risk losing their jobs.

The mandate has become one of the airline industry’s toughest policies.

Cathay Pacific stated it had struggled with staff rostering due to Hong Kong’s strict quarantine rules, which require unvaccinated crew members to quarantine every flight.

New guidelines exempt flight crew that are vaccinated from quarantining

There are also requirements that only fully vaccinated crews can operate to certain high-risk destinations and on quarantine-free “bubble” flights.

Hong Kong has a surplus of unused vaccines and some of the shots are about to expire.

Cathay said 90% of pilots and more than 65% of the cabin crew had already received their vaccinations or had appointments booked, following a previous warning that vaccination was highly likely to become compulsory.

US Airlines impose similar rules

United Airlines has confirmed it would mandate full vaccination for crew members flying to countries with high COVID-19 cases at the beginning of August.

Delta Air Lines last month said all new hires would have to be vaccinated.

While passengers on all Qantas international flights will also become mandated, after the airline said it will require all passengers and crew to be vaccinated when the country’s borders reopen to widespread international travel.

Emirates has provided employees with free vaccines since January.

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Visa’s multi-billion investment in European open banking platform

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Payments technology company Visa has confirmed it has signed a deal to buy Swedish open banking platform Tink

The payment tech company is set to hand over $2.15 billion for the acquisition, one of the largest investments for the company.

The total financial consideration included cash and retention incentives.

Visa says Tink would retain its brand and management team, and its headquarters would continue to operate as normally in Stockholm.

Visa is now set to fund the deal from cash on hand and the acquisition would have no impact on Visa’s previously announced stock buyback programme or dividend policy.

In January, Visa and financial technology company Plaid called off their $5.3 billion merger agreement following a U.S. government lawsuit aimed at stopping the merger on antitrust grounds

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Regulators send urgent danger warning to global airlines

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Airlines across the world have been sent an urgent warning by regulators

As parts of the world slowly recovers from the pandemic, and consumer confidence in travel peaks, airlines are being urged to check a certain type of aircraft that millions of people fly on each and every year.

Regulators have called for more rigorous checks when pulling some Airbus Aircraft out of pandemic storage, following flawed cockpit readings that can suggest blocked sensors.

Pilots rely on airspeed readings obtained from external probes known as pitot tubes, which can become blocked by insect nests or dirt if they are not properly sealed during storage.

Multiple airlines forced to abort takeoffs

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency confirmed that recently, airline operations have become disrupted due to incidents involving the A320 range of aircraft.

“an increasing number of operational disruptions have been reported due to airspeed discrepancies” as they return to the air.

A spokesperson said the events included commercial flights and in most cases led to aborted takeoff. “EASA had no reports of any resultant injuries, aircraft or system issues,” she said.

Asked whether passengers had been on board, an Airbus spokesperson said it did not have a breakdown between passenger, freight or technical check flights.

Recent reports have now prompted Airbus to carry out further computer simulations which suggested that problems with two out of three sensors may affect the plane’s stability during take-off. The agency noted however that none of these events happened in operations.

The Airbus spokesperson said these follow-up actions were precautionary and that safety was its chief priority.

“Alarming” Rise in Cases

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency first reported an “alarming” rise in August 2020. The agency saw a rise in the general number of cases of unreliable cockpit indications during the first flight of jets leaving storage.

It called on operators of all makes and models of passenger aircraft to be vigilant.

Pilot rustiness, maintenance errors and a loss of expertise in the supply chain due to job cuts have also raised concerns.

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