The Scent of Writs in the Air?
The Dutch airline KLM had earlier carried out a test flight through the ash cloud over Dutch airspace. A spokesman for the airline said: “We have not found anything unusual and no irregularities, which indicates the atmosphere is clean and safe to fly.”
Lufthansa also flew 10 aircraft from Munich to Frankfurt on Saturday with the blessing of the safety authorities.
A spokesman said: “We found no damage to the engines, fuselage or cockpit windows. This is why we are urging the aviation authorities to run more test flights rather than relying on computer models.”
Ulrich Schulte-Strathaus, the Secretary General of the Association of European Airlines, said: “Verification flights undertaken by several of our airlines have revealed no irregularities at all; this confirms our requirement that other options should be deployed to determine genuine risk”.
The blanket ban was initially imposed on Thursday by Nats, the national air traffic control service.
Keith Bill, a spokesman for the pilots union BALPA, challenged Nats to prove that they have taken advice from counterparts around the world who have greater experience of ash clouds caused by volcano eruptions.
Jo Gillespie, an aviation safety expert, said: “Without having the data to back up the decision this looks like an overreaction and is hugely damaging to the already suffering airline industry.”
I seem to hear our learned friends rumbling into gear ready to sue someone for causing losses by issuing warnings and bans that aren't properly evidence based. The Met Office has the ultimate responsibility, does it have Crown Immunity?