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Volcanic ash affects trans-atlantic flights

05-09-2010 09:37 BJT

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The eruption of the Iceland volcano is showing no signs of stopping since it began belching ash in April. Hundreds of flights between Europe and North America were either delayed or cancelled on Saturday due to the spreading cloud of volcanic ash across much of the northern Atlantic.

The Icelandic volcano reminded the world once again that it has the power to disrupt international travel - coughing out a spreading cloud of ash that has delayed or canceled hundreds of flights between Europe and North America.

At least 19 airports in northern Spain had to be closed on Saturday. More than 670 flights were cancelled and almost 40,000 people were stuck in airports.

Traveller, said, "We were going to Munich and my colleagues here had to take a flight from Munich to Delhi, in India. We are thinking about what to do now. We don't know yet."

Traveller, said,:"When I came here! Everything was cancelled I was really upset because it is very disruptive. But, well, nothing we can do about it..."

The prospects for Sunday flights remain grim, with no improvement in sight for trans-Atlantic passengers, and with a plume of low-altitude ash continuing to float eastward.

Airports in Portugal and southern France can also be affected by the recurrence of the ash cloud.

Trans-Atlantic flights have had to be re-routed to avoid the 2,000-kilometre -long cloud stretching from Iceland to northern Spain.

This will increase flying times by about an hour in either direction.

The disruption to air traffic does not compare to the five-day closure of European airspace last month. That forced the cancellation of more than 100,000 flights.

But experts warned on Saturday of a rise in emissions from the volcano in the coming week.'

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Editor:Yang Jie |Source:

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