Helicopter flights suspended off the UK

Routine helicopter flights to oil and gas facilities off the UK have been suspended because of volcanic ash in the air from a volcanic eruption in Iceland.

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Apr. 15
-- Routine helicopter flights to oil and gas facilities off the UK have been suspended because of volcanic ash in the air from a volcanic eruption in Iceland.

NATS, the UK air traffic control authority, suspended all nonemergency aviation at midday Apr. 15, saying, “Volcanic ash represents a significant safety threat to aircraft.” It said the restrictions would remain in place until at least the morning of Apr. 16.

Oil & Gas UK said search-and-rescue and air ambulances remained available to serve oil and gas facilities off the UK. It said suspension of helicopter flights had disrupted scheduled crew changes.

“Oil and gas operators are currently considering their contingency plans to assess how a prolonged suspension of flights would affect their operations and what nonessential activities could be postponed in that case,” the industry group said.

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