Iceland volcano – Flight disruptions: Update

May 12, 2010 Edward

Iceland’s volcano continues to emit a dense plume of ash and there are no signs that the eruption is about to end.

The latest information received indicates the ash concentration is impacting southern and central Spain and Portugal including the Canary Islands and Madeira. The areas of high ash concentration on high altitudes in the middle of the North Atlantic is dispersing, easing the previously difficult situation affecting Trans Atlantic flights.

According to the latest forecasts, areas of higher ash concentration could move in a north-easterly direction cutting across the Iberian Peninsula and into south east France. These areas are of high altitude are not expected to impact airports.

The U.K Metrological Office and the U.K CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) have confirmed the effectiveness of the model used to determine the areas where ash concentration could be above engine tolerance levels. For that reason, a 60 nautical mile ‘Buffer Zone’ that had been initially added to the proposed no-fly zone is to be omitted.

Morocco: Several airports closed for most of the morning, including Casablanca and Rabat

Lisbon: Open but huge delays
Faro: Closed
PT Islands: Closed

San Pablo: Closed since 06:00 (local time) this morning
Gran Carania: Reopened
The restrictions for planes flying between 20,000 ft (6,000 m) and 35,000 ft (10,500 m) are causing a reduction of 25 percent in capacity which is affecting Madrid and Barcelona airports.

Turkey imposed a four hour flight ban over the country’s north-west from 12:00 GMT however; the main Istanbul international airport remains open.