Local flights, hell, most of Europe has been shut down for 3 days and there’s no end in sight.
[quote]As an increasingly large part of European airspace was shut down for the third day on Saturday and the towering fountain of ash from an Icelandic volcano showed no signs of letting up, questions about the long-term impact of the eruption were being raised in a continent trying to recover from recession.
Officials expressed hope that some air travel could resume on Sunday, or possibly Monday, but the workings of Iceland’s volcano were too mysterious to make rational predictions. . . .
About 17,000 flights were canceled on Saturday, and travelers scrambled to find accommodation or land routes home during what is already the worst disruption in international air travel since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, when all air travel in and out of the United States then was halted for three days.
While the closing of the airways has already laid waste to the immediate plans and business of industry, the arts and world leaders, the possibility that it could drag on for days, if not weeks, is raising concerns about the longer term consequences for public health, military operations and the world economy.
The disaster is estimated to be costing airlines $200 million a day, but the economic damage will roll through to farms, retail establishments and nearly any other business that depends on air-cargo shipments. Fresh produce will spoil, and supermarkets in Europe, used to year-round supplies, will begin to run out. . . .
Europe’s three largest airports — London Heathrow, Frankfurt and Paris-Charles de Gaulle — were all shut on Saturday, with officials hoping that flights could resume sometime Sunday or, more likely, Monday. Britain, France, Germany and Ireland banned most commercial air traffic for another day. Airports in northern Italy were closed on Saturday.
European airlines said that up to 70 percent of flights scheduled for Saturday were canceled as backlogs increased. Eurocontrol, which coordinates air traffic in more than 35 countries, said that some 17,000 flights were canceled Saturday out of a normal load of 22,000. . . [/quote]
nytimes.com/2010/04/18/world … sh.html?hp
And here’s the culprit. . .