Creative Re-use Award #1
The West Virginia National Guard have built an anti-terrorist training
ground in an abandoned tunnel that was formerly part of the West Virginia
Turnpike. The training area, located just off the Turnpike about 25 miles
south of Charleston, is to be a staging ground for law enforcement,
emergency workers and the military to practice responding to disasters
such as underground explosions and poisonous gas emissions in tunnels.
Melbourne Boy Drowns in Drain
A teenager's death in a Melbourne drain has brought new attention to
draining -- and the infamous Cave Clan organization -- down under. Brian
McHugh, a fourteen year-old Melbourne, Australia boy was drowned late
December in the Northcote Golf stormwater drain when flash floods
occurred. The boy's companion was washed approximately a kilometre down
Merri Creek until he was able to get to safety. Neither boy was a member
of the Cave Clan.
Pittsburgh Man Loves Buses
A Pittsburgh man was arrested in June after confessing to Port Authority
police that he regularly "borrowed" buses from a city garage late at
night, drove around, and occasionally picked up passengers. Ronald
Johnson, a self-proclaimed bus enthusiast, would enter the city's East
Liberty garage dressed in a driver's uniform, take a bus, and drive it
around for awhile, occasionally hitting a few parked cars while carousing.
While returning a bus to the garage on June 1, Johnson called a dispatcher
to let him know he had "taken a bus out for a ride," had had a good time,
and was now returning it. (Thanks to Slappy for this story.)
Creative Re-use Award #2
The Metropolitan Transit Authority is in negotiations with the New
Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to drop some 650 obsolete
New York City subway cars into New Jersey waters to serve as artificial
reefs. The remainder of the 1,300 extinct "Redbird" subway cars would be
used as reefs off the coast of Long Island. The cars, which are very
similar to steel hulls currently sunk along the reefs, could be disposed
of at a savings of up to $13 million US if submerged in the water.
(Thanks to Slappy for this story.)
Handshaking Infiltrator Strikes Again
An unarmed, unauthorized man cleared security and entered a VIP
area to watch the inauguration of U.S. President George W. Bush in
January. Following the ceremony, the man performed an "unscheduled
handshake" with President Bush, passing a coin to him as he did so. The
same man performed a similar handshake when he infiltrated Bill Clinton's
Volkswagen Jumps from Golden Gate Bridge
In an effort to heighten awareness about the majesty of engineering,
students from the University of British Columbia hung the shell of a
Volkswagen Beetle from San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge earlier this
month. A few hours prior to this event, another group of UBC students was
prevented from suspending another VW shell from Vancouver's Capilano
Suspension bridge when they triggered a silent alarm, alerting the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police. The Golden Gate Beetle was transported onto the
bridge in a van, which the students then stopped in the middle of the bridge
and hoisted over the side using a rigging of steel cable, nylon netting, and
wooden planks. The Beetle was not said to have been suffering from
Whale Infiltrates Whale-Watching Boat
A 20-foot baby humpback whale jumped on board a tourist boat uninvited
earlier this month, injuring a tourist. A spokesperson for the boating
company assured the public that security remains fairly safe for tourists.
"Normally whales will keep their distance when they hear the
engine," Phillips said. '"But juvenile whales are pretty high
strung and they don't know much yet.'"
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