A mate is a Flight Officer with Air New Zealand, he was operating their service HKG-LHR the same day as the British Airways crash and was just a bit behind BAW37, he says it was the coldest he’s seen up high with the OAT at -57. Their fuel temp got to -43, well below the freeze point of Jet A at -40, they had uploaded Jet A1 (freezing point -47) in Hongkers. The 777 was light (160 pax on an aircraft that can carry 300+) and so would have gone higher sooner in the flight, and stayed there for longer. With a long idle descent the fuel may not have frozen but it could have gelled or gone waxy (just before freezing) particularly if there was some Jet A in the mix. Fuel goes like jelly, flow is drastically limited, no noticable effect at idle but throttle up and nothing happens. Of course 20 mins later on the ground it’s all gone liquid again and no one knows. And Qantas will forever rue the day they walked away from the 777 program.

Re. Continuous descent approaches. I think you will find they are used by jets arriving in the early mornings from Japan into Cairns airport.

A few conflicts at the ALP friendly Deloitte. Colin Radford (former Chief of Staff to Victorian Minister Tim Holding) became a PARTNER at Deloitte, earning mega bucks (rumoured to be 275k plus), with the shortest of breaks possible from leaving Holding’s Office… two days. Surely that’s an issue? (Especially with kingpin Rudd’s new code of conduct for Canberra). Watch for the big contracts in water, TAC, WorkCover etc etc, being awarded to Deloitte!

Kerfuffles within Opera Australia about casting decisions. I work for the company and the age-old debate between aesthetics versus sound is being revived, with a director who’s been brought in objecting to the casting of one person, because she doesn’t look the part, even though she can sing it standing on her head. This is a dangerous precedent and directors and designers should take note, if a person can not sing in opera, the opera dies. So what if she looks like Maria Sharapova or Heidi Klum or Brad Pitt, if she can’t sing then the whole show is lost.

I am 63 years old and resigned from Westpac on 2 January this year and a few days later lodged a form to withdraw my small amount of super from Westpac superfund. After many phone calls I was advised yesterday that there is a freeze on all super funds and no withdrawals will be processed till this is lifted, I am most upset as I am needing this money to live and had lodged the form before the freeze on Monday.

Perfection Dairies based at Baulkham Hills has sold its family business for $42m to Dairy Farmers, which will be foreign owned shortly.

Commonwealth Bank have reduced some of its fixed home loan rates.