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Vulcano eruption in Iceland disrupts European air traffic

This is all over the news today and from what I’ve heard the largest closure of airports since 9-11. After a volcano eruption in Iceland early last morning, a massive cloud of ashes has been released into the atmosphere. It was blown southeast by the wind and is now floating over Europe.

The first eruption in Iceland on March 20th, 2010 (photo courtesy Boaworm)

This is what the ash cloud looked like over Bergen in Norway (photo courtesy Stiaand)

The ash cloud itself is non-toxic and not harmful to health in any way. It does, however, obstruct vision for airplane pilots and might interfere with the sensitive equipment, so many airports in Northern Europe were closed yesterday already.

Today most airports in Germany were closed entirely, leading to much chaos and frustration of the passengers. Right now, nobody can tell whether the ash cloud will disperse within hours or whether it might even take days before flights will start again. Passengers are recommended to contact the airlines directly for up-to-date information.

You’re also supposed to see the ash cloud in Germany in case the sky is otherwise clear, but since it’s quite cloudy here I can’t confirm that.

Interestingly, the volcano, which is called Eyjafjallajökull by the way, hasn’t erupted for almost 200 years. But now there was one eruption about four weeks ago and then this more massive one yesterday.

Update: Airports will remain closed until 2AM on Sunday, April 18



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  1. TomPier says

    great post as usual!

Continuing the Discussion

  1. Iceland Volcano calms down, air traffic back to normal | GermanGlobe linked to this post on May 25, 2010

    [...] mid-April I briefly talked about the volcano eruption in Iceland which blocked air traffic not only in Germany but all over Europe for almost a [...]



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