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Volcanic ash plume continues to keep New Zealand travelers grounded

06-14-2011 11:06 BJT

WELLINGTON, June 14 (Xinhua) -- Hundreds of travelers were stranded at New Zealand airports again Tuesday after airlines canceled more flights as ash from Peru's Puyehue-Cordon Caulle volcano continued to drift over the South Pacific.

Qantas and subsidiary Jetstar canceled all New Zealand domestic flights and services to Australia for the day, but said they were still assessing flights from Auckland Tuesday evening.

However, Air New Zealand said its domestic and trans-Tasman services would continue as scheduled.

The airline said it was working closely with the Civil Aviation Authority and MetService, the country's meteorological service, to establish safe flight paths.

Other airlines also continued international services to and from New Zealand, including Virgin Blue, Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Air Asia X, Air Pacific, Malaysia Airlines, Thai Airways, Cathay Pacific and Korean Air.

The ash cloud grounded an estimated 10,000 long-haul flight passengers Monday.

The recommended flight altitude was increased from 6,100 meters to 8,200 meters Monday afternoon, but the backlog from canceled flights resulted in long queues at airports.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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