EU vs the Volcano: Round Three

By | April 18, 2010
Ash plume from Eyjafjallajokull Volcano over t...
Image by NASA Goddard Photo and Video via Flickr

This is your latest Volcanic Update. The closure of most of European airspace continues. Today, out of nearly 25,000 flights, only 4,000 are expected to operate.

Closures include Austria, Belgium, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, most of France, most of Germany, Hungary, Ireland, northern Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Slovakia, north Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine and the UK.

KLM and Lufthansa carried out test flights over Europe today to test procedures in the hopes of getting permission to resume flight operations. All flights landed without incident and the planes in question are being analyzed.

The longer European airspace takes to reopen, the longer the recovery time. It will take at minimum a wee at this point for things to return to normal, during which time airlines will have lost millions at a time when they are already troubled. Meanwhile, in many cities around the world, passengers are stranded and unable to return home. Those who purchased travel insurance, most policies cover the complete cessation of services by your carrier at an airport and should thus cover the situation up to the declared maximum, but hotel space is at a premium.

In Europe, we’re expecting to see enterprising motorcoach operators, trains, and boat operators step in to provide service during this period, although these services are already overloaded.

Here’s to hoping to flight operations resuming by Tuesday.