RECENT LOCATIONS

Close
Add a location
Edit your saved locations

Ash Causes More Airport Closures


May 8, 2010 — Saturday saw airport closures in Spain, Portugal and Italy as the big plume of volcanic ash continues to snake throughout Europe.

The volcanic ash is back. And it's causing more problems for the airline industry.

Saturday saw airport closures in Spain, Portugal and Italy as the big plume of volcanic ash continues to snake throughout Europe.

And now, Eurocontrol says flight disruptions are likely as more ash cloud makes it's way through southern France, Switzerland and northern Italy.

It's expected to reach southern parts of Germany by Sunday evening, along with the Czech Republic and Austria.

The ash stretches from the ground up to 6,000 metres and is helping to close airports all over Europe. Eurocontrol says trans-Atlantic flights will continue to be re-routed northward over Greenland to avoid the massive 2,000 km ash cloud.

So far, the volcano plume has already forced around 600 daily flights to carry extra fuel because the diversions have been lengthening flights by up to two hours.

However, the immediate obstacle would force trans-Atlantic flights into air corridors that run unusually south into Spanish airspace or north into the Arctic.

This could potentially mean that each extra hour in the sky is costing more than $5,000 in aviation fuel per plane, because the planes need to fly around the smoky cloud.

American Airlines says flights have been travelling 90 minutes to two hours longer on average.

These closures were the first such since most of European airspace was closed April 14-20. 10 million passengers were stranded after Iceland's volcano started spewing copious amounts of ash into the air.

If you have travel plans to Europe, make sure you check the status of your aircraft using our Flight Tracker.

And for the lastest details on this story and other International news, tune into The Weather Network on TV. Your newscast comes up at :12 and :42 past every hour.

Sign in or Sign up to submit a comment.




Comments





Take your weather with you, no matter where you go.

Get instant forecasts and alerts, right on your computer.

  • RSS & Data
Add weather updates to your website or RSS reader.