Ash Cloud Approaching Israel

Published: May 10th 2010
in News » Israel

volcanic ash cloud
Pic: wikimedia commons

The ash cloud that has caused travel chaos throughout European skies is heading for Israel, according to the Israel Meteorological Office. It is scheduled to infiltrate Israeli air by Monday night.


Earlier today, transportation Minister Israel Katz ordered ministry staff to begin emergency preparations as the cloud crept into the Eastern Mediterranean at a height of around 20,000 feet.


Pushed by northeast winds, the cloud was on course to envelop Cyprus early Monday afternoon, and reported to reach Israel late Monday night.


Last month, thousands of flights were grounded and dozens of airports closed as Mount Eyjafjallajokull erupted, spewing out millions of cubic meters of ash. Air traffic has since resumed, but this week Europe saw another string of airport closures as the volcano erupted for a second time.


Civil Aviation Authority Giora Rom has said that for the meantime, Israeli skies would remain open, as the relatively low altitude of the cloud, close to 15,000 feet below the cruising altitude of commercial jets, may allow Israel to avoid closing airports for now.


Aviation experts continue to fear, however, that volcanic ash could damage the jet engines of aircraft in flight, potentially causing crashes.


More recently, flights have been disrupted in the Western Mediterranean. As well, airports were closed yesterday in Spain, Portugal, France, and Italy.


The cloud is currently spreading from Greenland down to Portugal, with winds expected to push the ash further east later today.

Related articles: (iceland, volcano, eruption, ash)

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