| European Airspace Closed Due Volcano Ash Cloud
Apr 15 2010, 07:08 PM
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Uk Extends Air Restrictions After Icelandic Eruption
This is the link;http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/8623806.stm
Iceland's ash plume and a warning from Met Office scientist Derrick Ryall
Most restrictions on UK airspace will stay in place until 1300 BST on Friday because of ash from a volcano in Iceland, air traffic controllers say.
But some flights may be allowed after 0100 BST from Northern Ireland and several airports in Scotland.
The volcanic eruption has caused flight cancellations across Europe amid fears the ash could cause engine failures.
Air traffic control service (Nats) said its next review would be at 0230 BST but the situation was "not improving".
The volcano's eruption is intensifying, and the wind direction is expected to continue bringing clouds of ash into UK and European airspace for some time to come - safety group Eurocontrol said the problem could persist for 48 hours.
The Nats restrictions that may be relaxed are on flights from Northern Ireland and the Western Isles of Scotland to and from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Prestwick.
A lone plane is in the skies above Britain tonight on a research mission to investigate the volcanic plume.
The aircraft - with scientists on board - is taking measurements of the height, density and position of the ash.
There are limits to what satellites and ground observations can discern about the plume.
Its flight path was planned to take it from Oxford to Prestwick to Lossiemouth to Newcastle and then back south.
Among the researchers on board are specialists in atmospheric science.
The aircraft - a Dortnier 228 - is managed by the government-funded Natural Environment Research Council. Its head of airborne research, Peter Purcell, described the plane as "extremely adaptable and capable".
"The instrumentation will allow the crew to safely monitor the atmospheric conditions as the plume is approached," he said.
The findings will be fed to Met Office to help improve forecasts for the plume's position.
North Atlantic traffic to and from Edinburgh, Glasgow, Prestwick and Belfast may also be allowed after 0100BST.
Nats said the situation was not improving because the forecast affected area "appears to be closing in from east to west".
The UK's airspace restriction was the worst in living memory, a spokesman said.
Up to 600,000 people are thought to have been affected and up to 5,000 flights could be cancelled.
Passengers were advised to contact their carriers prior to travel.
Transport Secretary Lord Adonis said he was "closely monitoring the situation" and would be meeting key transport officials on Friday morning.
Experts have warned that the tiny particles of rock, glass and sand contained in the ash cloud from the still-erupting volcano could be sufficient to jam aircraft engines.
The Health Protection Agency said the ash from the Eyjafjallajoekull eruption did not pose a significant risk to public health because of its high altitude.
Volcanic ash is expected to reach ground level over the UK, starting in Scotland on Thursday evening before moving south over the course of the night.
Health Protection Scotland said those with existing respiratory conditions such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema and asthma should ensure they have any inhalers or other medications with them.
These are some of the knock-on effects of the ash disruption:
Eurocontrol says Germany is monitoring the situation and considering partial airspace closures
Planes have been grounded in Ireland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland. France is also preparing to close its main airports.
There is severe disruption in both Poland and Spain, where all northbound flights are cancelled. Switzerland has cancelled a number of flights from Geneva
British Airways offers refunds or an option to rebook after all its domestic flights are suspended
Flybe announces it has cancelled all flights up until 1300 BST on Friday and more than 25 services due to run after that.
British sports teams have been hit by travel problems after flights were grounded
Extent of Iceland volcano ash cloud
The eruption in Iceland on Wednesday sent ash kilometres into the air. Satellite images show the cloud as brownish-black as ice particles mingle with ash.
People in the Eyjafjallajoekull area were evacuated, but the spread of the ash cloud raised concerns for air traffic controllers in nearby countries.
By 1800GMT, the whole of the UK is expected to be affected and the Air Traffic Control Service (Nats) has banned flights from UK airspace.
Meteorologists say that as the cloud spreads it will dissipate and lose intensity - but as the eruption continues, so does the ash cloud.
The situation is not expected to improve overnight as the ash cloud spreads. It is unclear when flights will be allowed to resume.
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A spokeswoman for Eurostar said it had experienced about 10,000 extra bookings and that Friday's services were "extremely full".
VOLCANIC ASH CLOUD
The eruption in the Eyjafjallajoekull area is the second to occur in a month
This eruption has released ash to significantly greater heights
Volcanic ash contains tiny particles of rock and even glass, which can wreak havoc with machinery
A 1982 BA flight unknowingly flew into an ash cloud, shutting down all four engines
While ash can be dangerous to health, the current cloud is too high to pose a threat
The ash is likely to lead to particularly red sunsets in some areas
Animated guide: Volcanoes
BBC travel news
Europe faces prolonged air chaos
The European air safety body, Eurocontrol, said the cloud of ash had reached 55,000ft and was expected to move through northern UK and Scotland.
The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) has sent up a reconnaissance flight to investigate how the ash is distributed in the cloud, something that is impossible to assess from satellite imagery.
In 1982 a British Airways jumbo had all four of its engines shut down as it flew through a plume of volcanic ash.
There was also an incident on 15 December 1989 when KLM Flight 867, a B747-400 from Amsterdam to Anchorage, Alaska, flew into the plume of the erupting Mount Redoubt, causing all four engines to fail.
Once the flight cleared the ash cloud, the crew was able to restart each engine and then make a safe landing at Anchorage, but the aircraft was substantially damaged.
Eruption site webcam
Map of Icelandic Volcanoes: Global Volcanism Program
Expert Analysis: Nordic Volcanological Center
The eruption under a glacier in the Eyjafjallajoekull area of Iceland is the second in the country in less than a month.
Volcanologist Thor Thordarsson said if the Icelandic volcano maintained its current phase of activity, then the eruption could be over in "a few hours or even a few days" meaning the atmosphere would clear shortly afterwards.
But he added: "If the eruption has a face change and starts to produce lava... then we might be in for a much longer haul, an eruption that might last for months or even years, with a quiet period in between intermittent explosions."
Prof Bill McGuire, professor at the Aon Benfield UCL Hazard Research Centre, said it was not "particularly unusual" for ash from Icelandic eruptions to reach the UK.
"Such a large eruption... would have the potential to severely affect air travel at high northern latitudes for six months or more.
"In relation to the current eruption, it is worth noting that the last eruption of Eyjafjallajoekull lasted more than 12 months."
A worry for both airlines and passengers. The money lost could be a financial disaster for the airlines ans also the passengers who are returning home to their jobs, but safety must always come first. I just hope the volcano settles down soon.
Apr 16 2010, 05:54 PM
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Iceland volcano ash travel havoc worst since 9/11
Published on Friday, Apr. 16, 2010 3:26PM EDT
Last updated on Friday, Apr. 16, 2010 4:00PM EDT
.Disruption of air traffic because of the spread of volcanic ash from Iceland will be significant on Saturday, European aviation control agency Eurocontrol said on Friday.
The ash was expected to spread further south and east, Eurocontrol said.
Here is a list of countries affected as of Friday afternoon EST:
AUSTRIA - Austrian airspace will be completely closed in stages. Vienna and Linz airports to be shut from 1645 GMT, Salzburg and Innsbruck from 1700 GMT, Graz and Klagenfurt from 2000 GMT. Authorities said the airspace closure was likely to continue into Saturday.
BELGIUM - Airspace closed until Saturday 0800 GMT.
BRITAIN - English airspace is closed until 0000 GMT Saturday. Limited flights from Scotland and Northern Ireland operating until 1800 GMT Friday. British Airways said on Friday all flights into and out of London would be cancelled on Saturday. No further details of flight plans were available on BA’s website.
BULGARIA - Sofia airport open but flights to western Europe cancelled.
DENMARK - Airspace closed until Saturday 0600 GMT.
EGYPT - Egypt cancelled 15 flights to Europe on Friday, but Cairo International airport open.
ESTONIA - Airspace closed until Saturday 2400 GMT.
FINLAND - Airspace and airports closed until Sunday 18 1200 GMT. Finnair will cancel all traffic until then.
FRANCE - Airports across northern France, including Paris, will remain closed until Saturday 0600 GMT.
GERMANY - Takeoffs and landings have stopped at a total of 13 airports in Hamburg, Bremen, Hanover, Muenster, Duesseldorf, Cologne, Frankfurt, Saarbruecken, Berlin, Leipzig, Erfurt and Dresden. Aircraft can still land at airports in southern Germany such as Stuttgart or Munich.
GREECE - Greek airports were operating on Friday but about 85 flights to Britain, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Poland and the Czech Republic were cancelled.
HUNGARY - Hungary will close its airspace from 1700 GMT on Friday for 24 hours.
ITALY - Rome’s Fiumicino airport has cancelled 34 flights to northern Europe. Alitalia has cancelled all its flights to London, Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels.
LATVIA - Airspace closed until Saturday, 0600 GMT.
LITHUANIA - All fights cancelled and some airspace closed, but local media report air control saying that airspace is technically still open.
LUXEMBOURG - Airspace closed until 1600 GMT.
NETHERLANDS - Airspace closed.
NORWAY - Closed for Friday.
POLAND - Only one airport, in the southeastern city of Rzeszow, is open after airspace over the country was closed.
ROMANIA - Bucharest main airport open, though around 60 flights to and from western Europe were cancelled on Friday. Air traffic administration will close northwestern airspace from 0000 GMT.
RUSSIA - The airport in the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad said it had closed to flights until at least 1700 GMT as the cloud of ash began spreading towards European parts of Russia. In Russia proper, airspace is open but authorities say they expect the cloud of ash to have spread across the European parts of Russia by 1800 GMT. No major airports have been closed yet.
SLOVAKIA - All commercial flights from Bratislava cancelled since 1300 GMT Friday. Emergency, security and some small private flights will continue.
SPAIN - Madrid airport open. Iberia has cancelled all its flights to London, Brussels, Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Berlin, Dusseldorf, Stockholm and Warsaw.
SWEDEN - Closed for Friday.
SWITZERLAND - Civil aviation authorities are temporarily closing Swiss airspace from midnight Friday, when they expect the ash cloud to reach the country, until Saturday 0700 GMT.
UKRAINE - Kiev’s Borispol airport open. Two of Ukraine’s biggest airlines cancelled some 11 west-bound flights on Friday.
Apr 19 2010, 10:00 PM
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Group: FL350 CREW
Joined: 13-December 04
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QUOTE(trijetflyermd11 @ Apr 19 2010, 03:23 PM) [snapback]132159[/snapback]
....and I have been stuck for 4 days here in Krasnoyarsk / Siberia. We might get in tomorrow. Even then I´d still have to make it further over the atlantic..... What a week!!!
I feel sorry for you stuck Trijet..It must be a worry not knowing when it will be safe to fly out.
This is the latest news link:http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8630632.stm
EU moves to ease Europe flight curbs
The EU has moved to ease air travel curbs imposed after much of Europe's airspace was shut because of the spread of volcanic ash from Iceland.
Transport ministers proposed creating a core no-fly area, a limited-service zone and an open-skies area.
But the UK later scaled back plans to reopen its airspace as the eruption strengthened, spewing a new ash cloud.
The International Air Transport Association earlier labelled the chaos a mess and an embarrassment for Europe.
The body says its losses have soared over $1bn (£650m; 740m euros), since much of Europe's airspace was closed last week because of ash from southern Iceland's Eyjafjallajoekull volcano.
Following talks with the EU's 27 transport ministers by video conference, Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas told reporters in Brussels more planes should start flying from Tuesday.
EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas: "We should see... more planes start to fly"
He added: "There cannot be any compromise on safety. All the decisions must be based on scientific evidence and expert analysis."
British Airways was the latest airline to call the flight bans unnecessary.
However, the UK's air traffic control body, Nats, later warned that the volcanic eruption had renewed, and revised its plans to reopen airports across parts of the UK.
Airspace in Scotland and parts of the north of England was still expected to reopen on Tuesday.
But plans for flights to resume at airports in Northern Ireland and as far south as London look doubtful.
"Since our last statement at 1530 [Monday], the volcano eruption in Iceland has strengthened and a new ash cloud is spreading south and east towards the UK," said a statement from Nats.
"This demonstrates the dynamic and rapidly changing conditions in which we are working."
British Airways says it is "reviewing" its plan to resume flights from London airports from 1800 GMT on Tuesday, in the light of the latest reports.
Scene at volcano amid 'new phase'
Experts had earlier said the volcano - which erupted last Wednesday for the second time in a month - was now spewing more steam and less ash.
A US official said on Monday a Nato F-16 fighter jet had suffered engine damage after flying through the volcanic ash cloud.
In the high temperatures of an engine turbine, ash can turn to molten glass and cripple the engine.
It's this shared experience of facing a common challenge that I'll remember - my faith in human kindness is renewed
Canadian oil worker
Flight doubts after new ash cloud
Meanwhile, the UK deployed three Royal Navy warships to help pick up stranded passengers from Spain and the Channel ports.
In Spain, where all airports were open, the government offered to let Britain and other European countries use its airports as stopovers to get passengers moving again.
The two main German airlines, Lufthansa and Air Berlin, were granted exemptions from the flight ban to fly home thousands of stranded passengers.
France said it was reopening air corridors for flights between Paris and southern French cities, and eventually all its other airports.
Some passenger flights will be allowed to leave Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam from Monday night, said the Dutch transport minister.
Airspace in Belgium, Italy and Denmark is also due to begin opening from Tuesday morning.
But Finland shut its airports again until Tuesday afternoon.
Airports have already reopened in Austria, Estonia, Hungary and Turkey.
European airlines have asked the EU and national governments for financial compensation for the closure of airspace.
EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht said the bloc's economy would suffer badly if the disruption continued for a long time.
"What makes me a little bit afraid is that there is no timer on this volcano," he told news agency Reuters.
The shroud of fine mineral dust particles from the volcano has spread from the Arctic Circle in the north to the French Mediterranean coast in the south, and from Spain into Russia.
Apr 20 2010, 05:19 AM
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QUOTE(L-1011 @ Apr 16 2010, 05:23 PM) [snapback]132131[/snapback]
They just have to do it for safety reasons.
. . .They just have to do it for safety reasons.
`PILOTS GIVEN OPTION TO FLY OR NOT TO FLY` NEWS 19 APRIL 2010
NO PRESSURE THEN?
This is awful, now if pilots fly and something happens pilots get the blame for going up.
If we don`t fly - then rude disgusting newscasters like Jeremy Paxton, will blame the pilots for being whimpy and not flying - while there will be some Bozo of equally low intelligence to Geremy Paxman (the spelling of his name is not important as he is so insignificant to the world in general) there will be some Bozo flying and squealing "-its all very nice up here - not a cloud in the sky. . ." in a squeeky voice.
The situation to date, was healthy - B.A. boss gingerly flew out west along a NATSTRACK to try the air for himself (good call).
NATS had closed the airspace due to advice and information of the highest order from the MET boys and girls. So what is the problem? The Royal Navy have a ship or two on readiness to rescue those stranded on the beaches of Dunkirk.
All sorted!!? . . but no. . . . they couldn`t all handle that - now they have got to relay the political pressure onto the pilots, who will make the best decisions based on Flight Safety, the safety of the pax and their authority as per the Air Navigation Order . . . . .
Yep, it just HAD to come down to the poor old pilots in the end didn`t it?
I can hear the conversations now:-
"We`re having a hard time - lets let the pilots feel some of the pressure instead - after all, what are THEY doing, sunning themselves whilst us officials are sweating it under the media"
Thats the psychology - well, tough titty mates!
Either open the airspace IF IT IS SAFE
Keep it closed UNTIL IT IS SAFE
But don`t put the pressure or the media glare on us!! Because I will tell you what. . . We aint flying, until YOU deem it safe to do so - AND - we consider it safe to do so by about. . . .100%+ ok?
And IFALPA / BALPA, where are you when you are needed?
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