Wednesday, 5 May 2010 12:00 AM
Volcanic ash cloud travel chaos is back today, with some UK airports forced to ground flights.
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said airports in Scotland and Northern Ireland would be closed from 07:00 BST this morning, as the volcanic ash from the EyjafjallajÃ¶kull volcano spread south.
The CAA said that following the latest updated forecast from the UK Met Office, from 07:00 BST until 13:00 BST the following airports were expected to be closed: Glasgow, Prestwick, Inverness, Stornoway, Benbecula, Tiree, Islay, Barra, Campbeltown and Derry.
Further to those closures, from 13:00 BST and 19:00 BST the CAA expects the following airports to be closed: Glasgow, Prestwick, Stornoway, Benbecula, Tiree, Islay, Barra, Campbeltown, Belfast International, Belfast City, Derry.
However, air traffic controllers warned that current forecasts show that the 60 nautical mile buffer zone imposed around high concentrations of ash may be close to Edinburgh, Carlisle, Blackpool, Liverpool and Manchester airports.
But the CAA said in a statement: "However, based on current forecasts CAA has assessed that these airports can safely remain open, but passengers should check with their airline before travelling to the airport, as the situation is dynamic."
The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) also added that while some airports such as Cork and Kerry had no restrictions this morning, passengers should continue to contact their airline and check its website for updates, preferably before departing for the airport.
The closure of air space follows yesterday's closures, which saw flights grounded in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and western Scotland. Last month's volcanic ash plume caused travel chaos across Europe and lost the airline industry millions. An investigation is currently underway into how authorities dealt with the situation.
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