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November 25, 2015

Canadian politician Manmeet Bhullar dies aged 35 after traffic collision

Canadian politician Manmeet Bhullar dies aged 35 after traffic collision

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Wednesday, November 25, 2015

File:Media 2011 Picture (Leg) Bhullar Headshot.jpg

An image of Bhullar from 2011.
Image: Eldonm.
(Image missing from commons: image; log)

A road accident killed Alberta Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) Manmeet Bhullar on Monday. Bhullar pulled over to the median on a snowy stretch of the Queen Elizabeth II highway between Edmonton and Calgary to help a fellow motorist who had gone off the road, before a semi-truck lost control and hit him. Bhullar died at hospital at the age of 35.

Bhullar represented the Calgary-Greenway electoral district, and was a member of the Progressive Conservative party. His family received condolences from his colleagues after his death.

Bhullar became the first turban-wearing Sikh in the Alberta cabinet in 2011, as Minister of Service, and held cabinet positions until earlier this year. According to Calgary mayor Nasheed Nenshi, Bhullar was influenced to enter politics by early experiences of coping with others’ discomfort about Sikhs.

Bhullar was “a true warrior for fairness and justice, a big man with a giant heart, a friend”, said Nenshi. In a teleconference with journalists, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley recognised him for his work in making the governmental system more transparent.

Notley said she “quite frankly [expected] to see Manmeet in public life for decades to come. And I believe all Albertans are poorer for the fact we will not.”



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November 4, 2015

Volkswagen emissions scandal may affect thousands more cars

Volkswagen emissions scandal may affect thousands more cars

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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

A 2010 VW Golf TDI with “Clean Diesel”, one of the cars affected by the scandal.
Image: Mariordo Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz.

The Volkswagen emissions scandal continued yesterday with the company announcing 800,000 mainly diesel vehicles may also be affected by carbon dioxide emissions problems.

The company stated “the safety of the vehicles is in no way compromised”. They estimated potentially this could cost them 2bn on top of the €6.7bn set aside to pay for the cost of correcting 11 million cars affected when the scandal broke, in addition to fines by regulators.

Cquote1.svg the safety of the vehicles is in no way compromised Cquote2.svg

—Volkswagen

This follows Monday’s revelation that the emissions scandal has affected up to 10,000 vehicles sold in the USA by brands in the Volkswagen group, although the company refutes the allegation. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the regulatory body which has been investigating Volkswagen, claims the company fitted a number of recent Audi, Porsche, and Volkswagen models with technology that initiates secret components during emission tests to ensure the results are favourable.

The scandal began with damaging revelations that the car manufacturer has been using illegal software to enable diesel cars to cheat on mandatory emissions tests. This lead to a public apology on September 20 by then-chief executive Martin Winterkorn and the promise of an outside inquiry. He then resigned on September 23, and was replaced by Matthias Müller. The new allegation about Porsche is of particular concern for Müller, because he had previously been in charge of Porsche.

File photo of Martin Winterkorn who was CEO of Volkswagen when the scandal began.
Image: Volkswagen Sweden.

The company is expected to foot the bill for the recall of close to 500,000 VW and Audi cars affected at the time. There is also the possibility of Volkswagen having to pay federal fines of up to US$18 billion dollars because the US Clean Air Act sets a maximum fine of US$37,500 for each vehicle that contravenes the requirements of the Act.

An investigation into alleged breaches of environmental law was originally initiated on the advice of the International Council on Clean Transportation, a European non-governmental organisation. The EPA requested tests be carried out by West Virginia University, where the secret software was discovered.

The software, known as a “defeat device”, enabled cars to identify when they were being tested and to switch on the emission control system. The devices may have been adding urea to the car exhaust because that would reduce the amount of nitrogen dioxide. The car would release a fraction of the nitrogen oxide compared to when they were being driven normally. Emissions of nitrogen oxide contribute to smog and are thought to have caused a rise in respiratory illnesses like asthma.



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November 3, 2015

Volkswagen emissions scandal continues

Volkswagen emissions scandal continues – Wikinews, the free news source

Volkswagen emissions scandal continues

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Tuesday, November 3, 2015

A 2010 VW Golf TDI with “Clean Diesel”, one of the cars affected by the scandal.
Image: Mariordo Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz.

The Volkswagen emissions scandal continued today with the company announcing that 800,000 mainly diesel vehicles may also be affected although no information was given about which models are involved. The company stated that “the safety of the vehicles is in no way compromised”. Potentially this could cost the company €2bn on top of the €6.7bn that was set aside to pay for the cost of correcting 11 million cars affected when the scandal broke, in addition to fines by regulators.

Cquote1.svg the safety of the vehicles is in no way compromised Cquote2.svg

—Volkswagen

This follows yesterday’s revelation that the emissions scandal has affected up to 10,000 vehicles sold in the USA by other brands in the Volkswagen group, although the company refutes the allegation. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the regulatory body which has been investigating Volkswagen, claims that the company fitted a number of recent Audi and Porsche models with technology that initiates secret components during emission tests to ensure that the results are favourable.

The scandal originally broke on September 18, 2015 with damaging revelations that the car manufacturer has been using illegal software to enable diesel cars to cheat on mandatory emissions tests. This lead to a public apology by the previous chief executive, Martin Winterkorn, and the promise of an outside inquiry. He then resigned on September 23, and was replaced by Matthias Müller. The new allegation about Porsche is of particular concern for Müller, because he had previously been in charge of Porsche.

File photo of Martin Winterkorn who was CEO of Volkswagen when the scandal began.
Image: Volkswagen Sweden.

The company is expected to foot the bill for the recall of close to 500,000 VW and Audi cars affected at the time. There is also the possibility of Volkswagen having to pay federal fines of up to US$18 billion dollars because the US Clean Air Act sets a maximum fine of US$37,500 for each vehicle that contravenes the requirements of the Act.

An investigation into alleged breaches of environmental law was originally initiated on the advice of the International Council on Clean Transportation, a European NGO. The EPA requested tests be carried out by West Virginia University, where the secret software was discovered.

The software, known as a “defeat device”, enabled cars to identify when they were being tested and to switch on the emission control system. The devices may have been adding urea to the car exhaust because that would reduce the amount of nitrogen dioxide. The car would release a fraction of the nitrogen oxide compared to when they were being driven normally. Emissions of nitrogen oxide contribute to smog and are thought to have caused a rise in respiratory illnesses like asthma.



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  • Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Volkswagen emissions scandal

Sources[]

This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

September 24, 2015

Volkswagen CEO resigns after emissions scandal

Volkswagen CEO resigns after emissions scandal

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Thursday, September 24, 2015

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File photo of Martin Winterkorn, CEO of Volkswagen. Winterkorn resigned as CEO on Wednesday due to a scandal over the company’s rigging of emissions tests for its diesel vehicles.
Image: Volkswagen Sweden.

Martin Winterkorn, Volkswagen AG’s CEO, resigned yesterday after it was discovered the German motor vehicle company has been rigging emissions tests for their diesel vehicles.

The company has not announced who his successor will be, but plans to discuss the issue tomorrow. Winterkorn has said that he was “shocked” by the rigging of the emissions tests. “Above all, I am stunned that misconduct on such a scale was possible in the Volkswagen Group”, Winterkorn said in a statement issued yesterday.

This resignation came after he issued an apology on Sunday about the emissions test rigging, which involved installing a program onto the company’s diesel vehicles to manipulate test results. The program, referred to as a “defeat device”, causes the vehicles to emit less nitrogen dioxide, a pollutant contributing to smog and possibly linked to asthma, during testing.

Volkswagen’s share value has dropped by one third, The Toronto Star reported. The stock prices of France car manufacturers Citroen, Renault, and Peugeot have also dipped. The Associated Press states that this may be due to concerns other car manufacturers are also engaging in illegal acts.



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September 22, 2015

Volkswagen engulfed by diesel emissions scandal

Volkswagen engulfed by diesel emissions scandal

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Tuesday, September 22, 2015

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Chief Executive of Volkswagen Martin Winterkorn issued on Sunday a public apology and announced an outside inquiry would be carried out, after the company became engulfed in a scandal about diesel emissions tests.

Volkswagen logo

Over the weekend there were damaging revelations that the car manufacturer has been using illegal software to enable diesel cars to cheat on mandatory emissions tests.

An investigation into alleged breaches of environmental law was originally initiated on the advice of the International Council on Clean Transportation, a European NGO. The United States Environmental Protection Agency requested tests be carried out by West Virginia University, where the secret software was discovered.

Volkswagen has suffered a significant drop of almost a fifth in the value of its shares. There have been knock-on effects for other car manufacturers who have also seen their share values fall after suggestions that the scandal could extend much further than just Volkswagen.

The company will have to foot the bill for the recall of close to 500,000 VW and Audi cars. There is also the possibility of paying federal fines of up to US$18 billion dollars because the US Clean Air Act sets a maximum fine of US$37,500 for each vehicle that contravenes the requirements of the Act.

The software, known as a “defeat device”, enabled cars to identify when they were being tested and to switch on the emission control system. The devices may have been adding urea to the car exhaust because that would reduce the amount of nitrogen dioxide. The car would release a fraction of the nitrogen oxide compared to when they were being driven normally. Emissions of nitrogen oxide contribute to smog and are thought to have caused a rise in respiratory illnesses like asthma.



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  • Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Volkswagen emissions scandal

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September 17, 2015

South Sudan fuel tanker explosion kills dozens

South Sudan fuel tanker explosion kills dozens

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Thursday, September 17, 2015

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An overturned tanker exploded in Western Equatoria, South Sudan yesterday, killing dozens.

Motorcycles and a truck on a dirt road in South Sudan. The country has few paved roads.
Image: JennaCB123.

The death toll is unclear. At least 85 died according to presidential spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny, citing “local authorities”. Charles Kisagna of the local government said at least 100 died. County commissioner Wilson Thomas Yanga in remarks to the BBC put the toll at a minimum of 176.

The Red Cross said it had sent two burn kits to local rescuers in Maridi with provisions for 100 patients. Kisanga warns the toll may increase “because we do not have the facilities to treat the highly burnt people.” Radio Tamazuj spoke to a doctor who reported reserves of painkillers, oxygen, and other consumables were being exhausted.

Some casualties may have fled the scene. Reportedly, after the driver walked away from the crash to seek assistance, local residents began stealing petrol. South Sudan has few paved roads. Mass casualty fuel explosions are common in poor regions of East Africa.



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August 29, 2015

Four men go before Hungarian court after 71 found dead in lorry

Four men go before Hungarian court after 71 found dead in lorry

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Saturday, August 29, 2015

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Four foreign men have today gone before a court in Hungary on suspicion of people smuggling. Their detention relates to Thursday’s discovery of a lorry full of corpses in Austria. The death toll was yesterday finalised at 71.

Today’s hearing took place at the Palace of Justice in Kecskemet, pictured here from file.
Image: Tothsandor92.

The lorry had been abandoned since Wednesday on the hard shoulder of the “Eastern Motorway“, near the Hungarian border. Roadworkers became suspicious of dark liquid seeping from the vehicle, and responding police found the bodies. Initial police estimates were that 20–50 were suffocated in the back of the lorry which was near Parndorf.

The arrested men are thought to include the vehicle’s owner and at least two drivers. Three are Bulgarian and one is from Afghanistan. Criminal suspects in Hungary can generally be held for 72 hours before charge but prosecutors, citing the seriousness of the case, want the period extended. Extradition to Austria is possible.

Of the 71 dead, 59 are men, eight are women, and four are children. The children are thought to be aged three, eight, and ten years, alongside an eighteen-month-old baby. “There was also a Syrian travel document found” police spokesman Hans Peter Doskozil told journalists “so of course our first assumption is that these people were migrants, and likely a group of Syrian migrants. We can rule out that they were Africans”.

The four accused were escorted into court in Kecskemet, central Hungary, by a police convoy. Reportedly the lorry traveled from Kecskemet. Hungary is presently building a border fence across the Serbian frontier, as migrants from war-torn Syria and other regions seek access to the Schengen Area of free movement, which covers most of the EU.

Screengrab of Hyza graphic from the company homepage.
Image: Hyza.

Slovak chicken meat company Hyza, a previous owner, previously told Wikinews the lorry has changed hands several times in roughly the last year. After they sold it they say it was exported to Hungary; it now bears Hungarian plates but still features Hyza branding including pictures of meat.

On the day of the discovery Hyza quickly removed a graphic from their homepage featuring cartoon chicken stowaways in a car being inspected at a customs post. The stowaways also appeared with a line through them alongside the word “imigranti” and the site www.imigranti.sk in one corner. On the other side was Hyza’s logo. Imigranti.sk is also unavailable.

Police today found 26 migrants in a lorry near Braunau am Inn, Austria. The driver, from Romania, refused to stop for police and was arrested following a chase. Police said three children were hospitalised for “severe dehydration”. Found near the German border, the migrants were from Afghanistan, Syria, and Bangladesh.



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August 27, 2015

Austrian police find dozens dead inside lorry

Austrian police find dozens dead inside lorry

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Thursday, August 27, 2015

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The turning for Parndorf off the A4, from file. The lorry was found on the road nearby.
Image: My Friend.

Screengrab of Hyza graphic from the company homepage.
Image: Hyza.

Austrian police today found an estimated 20–50 decomposing corpses in an apparently abandoned lorry.

Roadworkers who spotted the vehicle, which had been there since yesterday at least, alerted police. Responding officers found it full of corpses. The lorry is on the so-called “Eastern Motorway“, the A4, close to the Hungarian border. It was on the hard shoulder between Neusiedl and Parndorf, closer to Parndorf.

The victims are thought to have suffocated. Police are seeking the driver. The Krone published an image of a non-articulated food lorry on the hard shoulder, which they report is the vehicle in question. The photo shows a pool of dark liquid on the ground beside the vehicle.

Video from a passing motorist shows at least one helicopter on-scene. The truck, which has pictures of meat on the side, shows branding for Slovakian food firm Hyza. Earlier today the company’s website sported an apparent anti-immigration graphic, which has since been removed.

Wikinews got in touch with Hyza. “We are truly sorry about [the] tragedy” they told us in a statement. They said they have checked GPS trackers on their fleet and all their vehicles remain in Slovakia. The statement says the lorry in question was one of 21 Hyza vehicles sold on last year. It was then sold again and exported to Hungary, where it is now registered. Hyza told us the new owners have not changed the branding on the vehicle. According to the Bild newspaper, Agrofert — the parent company of Hyza — said in a statement the new owners were required to do so.

Hyza says they will “actively cooperate with Slovak police”, and “express [their] sincere condolences to the bereaved families.”

Interior Minister Johanna Mikl-Leitner called it “a dark day” and called for European Union-wide measures to protect immigrant refugees and tackle human traffickers. Neighbouring Hungary is constructing a border fence across its entire frontier with Serbia. Yesterday alone saw a record 3,241 attempts to enter Hungary illegally, according to authorities there.

Conflict in Syria and other parts of the world has led refugees to Europe. Once inside, they can move freely inside the Schengen Area, which covers most of the EU.

Austrian police earlier this week arrested three motorists suspected of people smuggling. One driver is accused of moving 34 people, ten of them children, into Austria from Serbia. The group were left by the roadside near Bruck an der Leitha and reported struggling to breathe in the van.



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August 23, 2015

Vintage plane crashes into road during Shoreham Air Show in England

Vintage plane crashes into road during Shoreham Air Show in England

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Sunday, August 23, 2015

The crashed aircraft, pictured in 2013 during a display.
Image: Alan Wilson.

Police warn more bodies may remain to be found after yesterday’s crash of a vintage jet killed at least seven people. The Hawker Hunter crashed into a busy road during the Shoreham Air Show in England.

The plane failed to pull out of a large loop at around 1:20p.m. It hit the nearby A27 road, erupting into a fireball and leaving cars burned out and heavily damaged. The scene in West Sussex is near the town of Shoreham.

Pilot Andy Hill is presently alive but critically injured in hospital. He has previously flown with British Airways and the Royal Air Force. Two of the dead are Worthing United FC football players, Matthew Grimstone and Jacob Schilt, who were on their way to a match.

Also killed was Matt Jones, 24, who worked as a personal trainer. He came from Littlehampton and was giving a friend a lift. A vintage Daimler wedding limousine on its way to collect a bride was also caught up in the crash, but its owner Chariot Chauffeurs say they are unclear on if the driver was a fatality.

Sussex Police and the Air Accidents Investigation Branch are investigating. Police Superintendent Jane Derrick said last night “”At this time we are continuing to search[…] It is possible that tonight and tomorrow we are going to find more bodies at the scene.” She said it is believed all casualties except the pilot were road users. At least fourteen were injured.

A Hawker Hunter displaying at last year’s show.
Image: John5199.

The pilot did not eject. Hill was experienced, with years of display flying under his belt and a military career that included flying Harrier jump-jets. David Wildridge, another pilot who took part yesterday, said Hill is “well-known and well-loved”, “very professional”, and that his Harrier experience made him “the best of the best.”

The 1950s jet was decommissioned from military service in 1996 and sold at auction. In 2012 English entrepreneur Graham Peacock bought it for around £65,000. It is a regular at airshows.

Tina Tilley, head of the local chamber of commerce, was at the show ans said “From where we were we could see the jet came down very low and looked like it was going to scoop up – but it didn’t. There were flames and we knew it was right on the A27. Everyone was horrified and there were people crying.” Motorist Dom Lawson, whose car was narrowly missed, said “It was like something out of Die Hard.” The road closure left thousands trapped at the scene as they could not remove their cars.

In a statement, Prime Minister David Cameron sent “his heartfelt condolences to the families of the people who were so tragically killed… [his] thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the victims.” The airshow is cancelled today.

Earlier this year a pilot was killed when his plane crashed during an aerial display a CarFest in England. In 2007 a Shoreham Air Show display recreating the Battle of Britain ended with a pilot dead following a crash.



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Vintage plane crashes into road during Shoreham Airshow in England

Vintage plane crashes into road during Shoreham Airshow in England

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Sunday, August 23, 2015

The crashed aircraft, pictured in 2013 during a display.
Image: Alan Wilson.

Police warn more bodies may remain to be found after yesterday’s crash of a vintage jet killed at least seven people. The Hawker Hunter crashed into a busy road during the Shoreham Airshow in England.

The plane failed to pull out of a large loop at around 1:20p.m. It hit the nearby A27 road, erupting into a fireball and leaving cars burned out and heavily damaged. The scene in West Sussex is near the town of Shoreham.

Pilot Andy Hill is presently alive but critically injured in hospital. He has previously flown with British Airways and the Royal Air Force. Two of the dead are Worthing United FC football players, Matthew Grimstone and Jacob Schilt, who were on their way to a match.

Also killed was Matt Jones, 24, who worked as a personal trainer. He came from Littlehampton and was giving a friend a lift. A vintage Daimler wedding limousine on its way to collect a bride was also caught up in the crash, but its owner Chariot Chauffeurs say they are unclear on if the driver was a fatality.

Sussex Police and the Air Accidents Investigation Branch are investigating. Police Superintendent Jane Derrick said last night, “At this time we are continuing to search[…] It is possible that tonight and tomorrow we are going to find more bodies at the scene.” She said it is believed all casualties except the pilot were road users. At least fourteen were injured.

A Hawker Hunter displaying at last year’s show.
Image: John5199.

Assistant Chief Constable Steve Barry today said eleven people are “highly likely to have died in this tragedy”, based upon “our initial work at the site” and “inquiries following calls to the emergency services from worried families and friends”. He said officers currently remain at the “incredibly large” scene. There are plans to remove plane wreckage using a crane tomorrow.

The pilot, Hill, was experienced, with years of display flying under his belt and a military career that included flying Harrier jump-jets. David Wildridge, another pilot who took part yesterday, said Hill is “well-known and well-loved”, “very professional”, and that his Harrier experience made him “the best of the best.”

The 1950s jet was decommissioned from military service in 1996 and sold at auction. In 2012 English entrepreneur Graham Peacock bought it for around £65,000. It is a regular at airshows.

Tina Tilley, head of the local chamber of commerce, was at the show ans said “From where we were we could see the jet came down very low and looked like it was going to scoop up — but it didn’t. There were flames and we knew it was right on the A27. Everyone was horrified and there were people crying.” Motorist Dom Lawson, whose car was narrowly missed, said “It was like something out of Die Hard“. The road closure left thousands trapped at the scene as they could not remove their cars.

In a statement, Prime Minister David Cameron sent “his heartfelt condolences to the families of the people who were so tragically killed […] [his] thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the victims.” The airshow is cancelled today.

It is one of three deadly European airshow crash in four days. On Thursday two planes carrying parachutists collided and crashed in West Slovakia. At least seven were killed. They had been practising for an airshow due to be held this weekend. Today two small planes collided during an airshow in Dittingen, Switzerland. One of the pilots escaped but the other was killed.

Earlier this year a pilot was killed when his plane crashed during an aerial display at CarFest in England. In 2007 a Shoreham Airshow display recreating the Battle of Britain ended with a pilot dead following a crash.

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