Update on Volcanic Ash Situation and Flights

This is a statement from NATS regarding the Icelandic Volcanic Eruption

The cloud of volcanic ash continues to cover much of the UK and the eruption in Iceland continues. Following a review of the latest Met Office information, NATS advises that restrictions preventing flights in English controlled airspace will remain in place until 0100 (UK time) tomorrow, Saturday 17 April, at the earliest.

Flights in Northern Ireland and the Western Isles of Scotland to and from Glasgow and Prestwick will continue to be allowed until 1900 (UK time) subject to individual co-ordination.  North Atlantic traffic to and from Glasgow, Prestwick and Belfast may also be allowed in this period.From 1900 (UK time), forecasts indicate that Scottish airspace may be able to accept domestic flights within Scotland and Northern/Southern Ireland, and North Atlantic flights to/from airports in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

We will review further Met Office information and at 1430 (UK time) we will advise further arrangements.  In general, the situation is dynamic and subject to change.We continue to work closely with airports, airlines, and the rest of Europe to understand and mitigate the implications of the volcanic eruption.Please note these arrangements do not mean that flights will operate. Anyone hoping to travel today should contact their airline before going to the airport.

About NATS

NATS handled 2.2 million flights in 2009, covering the UK and eastern North Atlantic, that carried more than 200 million passengers safely through some of the busiest and most complex airspace in the world.NATS provides en route air traffic control from its centres at Swanwick, Hampshire and Prestwick, Ayrshire.NATS also provides air traffic control services at 15 of the nation’s major airports including Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow, together with air traffic services at Gibraltar Airport.





2 responses to “Update on Volcanic Ash Situation and Flights”

  1. Susan avatar

    There are passengers on TV saying they can’t understand why their airlines won’t tell them when they’ll be able to travel, but how are the airlines supposed to know?! I have sympathy for people being stranded at airports but it’s not the airlines’ fault and they can’t see into the future.

    1. admin avatar

      I agree that airlines can’t say much because they don’t know. However, they probably could be better with communicating what will happen if things get back to normal in the next day or so. For example, if a flight that was supposed to depart on Thursday or Friday will it be re-scheduled or just cancelled.

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