Public transit, battered by pandemic, triumphs at ballot box
Far fewer people are riding buses and trains during the COVID-19 pandemic, but in this month’s election voters still approved more than a dozen proposals to increase spending on public transit.From California to Virginia, voters supported sales or property tax hikes and bond issues to pay for maintenance, improvements or expansion of mass transit systems that have been hit hard in the last nine months.“Transit ridership is down in most cities. At the same time, it’s still moving millions of people a day, and a lot of those people are essential workforce — nurses, grocery store workers, people ...
The CDC upgrades cruise ship COVID-19 infection risk to highest level possible
MIAMI — The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention upgraded the cruise ship travel risk to a level 4, the federal agency’s highest risk level possible for contracting COVID-19.Amid reports of widespread outbreaks in cruises earlier this year, CDC recommends for travelers to avoid cruise ships, including river cruises, around the world, given the “very high” risk of becoming infected or spreading the novel coronavirus.If passengers decide to go on cruises, they should get tested three to five days after the trip. Even if they test negative after a trip, cruise ship travelers should sta...
Disney's Swan Reserve hotel looks to open summer 2021
ORLANDO, Fla. — The Walt Disney World Swan Reserve, the newest hotel planned for the Swan and Dolphin Resort complex, is scheduled to open in summer 2021, according to a recent news release offering a first look from the top floor.The 14-story hotel is planned to have 349 guest rooms, including 149 suites and two presidential suites. The top floor will be an event space with views of the resort and Disney theme parks.The hotel will also feature its own signature bar and restaurant as well as a health club and a pool.The news of the Swan Reserve’s scheduled opening comes as Orlando hotels are b...
Next week could be busiest for airports in pandemic, but still not that busy
MINNEAPOLIS — Airlines and airports are throttling expectations for Thanksgiving amid surging cases of COVID-19 nationwide.The pandemic is worsening just ahead of one of the busiest times for air travel.For months, U.S. airlines have pinned hope of a significant revenue boost on the holiday season. And while more Americans will be flying next week than have been in recent weeks, it’s now being further restrained by the virus’ pernicious spread.“The situation remains dire for the industry,” Nicholas E. Calio, chief executive of industry trade group Airlines for America (A4A), told reporters Thu...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Delta extends middle seat blocking policy
Delta Air Lines will extend its policy of blocking middle seats through March 30, the carrier announced Wednesday.Most other major airlines have stopped blocking middle seats, while Southwest Airlines, the second-largest carrier in Atlanta, plans to on Dec. 1. Alaska Airlines has pledged to block middle seats through Jan. 6.That makes Atlanta-based Delta the only U.S. airline blocking middle seats into the spring.Airlines say vertical airflow in the airplane cabin with HEPA filtration, along with mask requirements, help reduce the risk of the spread of COVID-19 among passengers. Southwest Airl...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Carnival Cruise Line cancels cruises through Jan. 31, brings ships back to US waters
Carnival Cruise Line canceled U.S. cruises through the end of January 2021.The company said in a statement that it will eventually restart cruises from Miami and Port Canaveral first, followed by Galveston. It is canceling cruises from Baltimore, Charleston, Jacksonville, Long Beach, Mobile, New Orleans and San Diego through Feb. 28 and from Tampa through March 26.Cruises on competitor lines remain canceled through Dec. 31 as companies prepare to comply with new U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention rules to prevent COVID-19 spread at sea. The rules, announced late last month, replac...
Cruise lines seeking volunteers for CDC-ordered 'test' voyages
Tens of thousands of cruise enthusiasts have offered to volunteer for “test voyages” that the cruise lines have been ordered to run before they’ll be allowed to resume operations out of United States ports.And while cruise lines are so far keeping mum about what the actual test cruises will entail, requirements by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control suggest they’re not intended to be fun days at sea.Still, responses so far show many sea-starved cruise fans are desperate to escape dry land.Kelli Holder Guffey, one of the fans posting on Royal Caribbean’s volunteer Facebook page, Volunteers of ...
Just like the famous London Eye, Miami gets its own mega Ferris wheel for sightseeing
Downtown Miami’s skyline has a major new $18 million player. The Skyviews Miami Observation Wheel debuted recently at the Bayside Marketplace.The 200-foot high Ferris wheel — or observation wheel, as it’s known in the tourism biz — allows you to take in spectacular views of Biscayne Bay and the city’s skyline. There are 42 climate-controlled gondolas with music and video features.Each enclosed gondola can hold up to eight people, staying in compliance with state and local COVID-19 guidelines. Masks are required.There is one VIP gondola with a glass floor, leather bucket seats and a custom LED ...
Porn star Ron Jeremy sued for sexual battery in LA as he also battles 35 criminal charges
A former longtime friend of Ron Jeremy says the porn actor pinned her against a wall and sexually assaulted last May, just weeks before he was arrested in a rape case now involving 23 alleged victims.Charity Carson filed her 13-page civil complaint Thursday, accusing Jeremy of sexual assault and battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress and gender violence.Carson, a Florida resident, says she drove to California for a vacation in early May and picked up a friend in San Diego before visiting Jeremy at the Highland Gardens Hotel in Los Angeles amid a sightseeing tour.She said Jeremy ...
New York Daily News
Passengers test positive aboard first Caribbean cruise restart during COVID-19 pandemic
A familiar COVID-19 scene is playing out off Barbados, where cruise passengers are confined to their rooms after fellow passengers tested positive for the virus.Despite two negative PCR COVID-19 tests for each passenger prior to boarding, the captain of the SeaDream 1 announced Wednesday that a passenger had tested positive on a less-reliable rapid test, four days into its seven-night voyage from Barbados. Since then, a total of six passengers have tested positive, according to Gene Sloan, a cruise writer who is on board.The ship is currently anchored off Bridgetown as the staff conducts more ...