Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Transport: Volcanoes

Transport written question – answered on 13th June 2011.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps his Department is taking to mitigate the effects on transportation of any future volcanic ash cloud.

Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers The Minister of State, Department for Transport

The Government's main priority is to ensure the safety of aircraft and air passengers. We are also working to improve agreed international procedures for mitigating the potential hazards caused by volcanic ash. Following the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull in April 2010, the UK has taken a number of additional steps to minimise disruption to passengers and airlines.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has worked closely with manufacturers and airlines to develop a better shared understanding of the ability of aircraft and their engines to tolerate volcanic ash. The CAA has issued revised guidance that enables airlines to operate in the medium and high ash concentration zones, provided an acceptable safety case exists.

The Government are also supporting the provision of new radar cover in Iceland to obtain more accurate data in the event of a future eruption and also the establishment of a permanent civil contingency aircraft for use by the Met Office to conduct atmospheric testing.

The impact of the Grimsvotn eruption in May 2011 was significantly less than last year's Eyjafjallajokull eruption. However, a number of further steps have been taken to address the lessons learned. The Government have established a Volcanic Ash Observations Group under the chairmanship of Sir John Beddington to look at ways of improving the input data for the Met Office volcanic ash dispersion model. In addition, the CAA has established a Volcanic Ash Advisory Group to improve the process for establishing high concentration danger zones.

Does this answer the above question?

Yes0 people think so

No0 people think not

Would you like to ask a question like this yourself? Use our Freedom of Information site.