Flights Remain Grounded as Volcanic Ash Sweeps Across Europe
Flights will remain grounded for the second day as the large cloud of volcanic ash makes its way across Europe. No flights will leave the UK until at least Saturday, leaving thousands of travellers stranded due to the continuing volcanic eruption in Iceland. A statement by air traffic control company Nats explains “The cloud of volcanic ash continues to cover much of the UK and the eruption in Iceland continues. Following a review of the latest Met Office information, Nats advises that restrictions will remain in place in UK controlled airspace”. The Met office will further review the situation throughout the day and decide if the conditions are suitable for aircraft to travel on the Saturday.
UK airports have been thrown into chaos over the last 24 hours as passengers learnt of the unexpected conditions. Many passengers were able to arrange alternative travel however ferries and trains tickets were soon sold out as more cancellations were announced. The ash cloud has also resulted in the closure of airspace across Europe including France, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Holland. However some flights leaving Northern Ireland and Western Scotland have been permitted to fly to Glasgow and Prestwick, these flights will be individually monitored and so far will only travel up to 1pm today.
Volcanic ash could pose a serious threat to aircraft travelling through the cloud, along with affecting visibility the particles could potentially be sucked into the aircraft’s engine and cause a complete shut-down. Nats has warned that the as the Iceland Volcano has yet to stop erupting, travellers should not expect the situation to improve any time soon.
Author: Robert Wheeler