The UK’s emergency committee Cobra has met to discuss the ash cloud chaos and HMS Ark Royal & HMS Ocean of the Royal Navy are on their way to help ferry stranded Britons back home from EU. Travel agents’ association Abta says its “rough estimate” is that 150,000 Britons are currently stranded abroad due to the chaos caused by the eruption of the Eyjafjallajökull Volcano. UK flight restrictions have been extended until at least 1900 utc today.
Previous eruptions in the area have caused flooding due to the melting of glacial ice but the current eruption is in an area covered by winter snow, not permanent ice. Although some past eruptions of Eyjafjallajökull were followed by larger, explosive eruptions at nearby Katla Volcano, there is currently no sign of activity at Katla.
This image made available by NEODASS/University of Dundee shows the volcanic ash plume from Iceland, top left, to the north of Britain at received by NASA’s Terra Satellite (11.39 GMT Thursday April 15, 2010).