Holidaymakers advised to ‘plan as normal’ despite volcano threat

The travel industry could face mass disruption as millions of Brits prepare to leave for the Bank Holiday weekend.

The Met Office in Iceland has warned that the country’s biggest volcano, Bardarbunga, could erupt in the coming days and potentially cause another major ash cloud.

In 2010, an ash cloud forced the closure of European air space for six days.

A volcanologist speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme this morning said the volcano had been rumbling for many days and could erupt at any moment.

She said the volcano had erupted frequently in the past but had never deposited ash outside the immediate vicinity and had not impacted air travel.

Jo Gillespie, an independent aviation safety consultant, told the Daily Telegraph that the aviation industry was much better prepared than it was in 2010.

However, she admitted an ash cloud and weather conditions similar to four years ago could still create a degree of disruption.

She said: “There would be a delay between the eruption and the gathering of enough data to decide where it was safe to fly.

“Having said that, the chances of a repeat of the exact conditions we saw in 2010 are very small, so I would be planning my holiday as normal if I was about to travel.”

The UK Civil Aviation Authority said it was monitoring the situation and was in contact with Icelandic authorities.

It added that advances in forecasting meant far fewer flights would have to be cancelled if Bardarbunga were to erupt.

Sourced from Travel Weekly

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