Virgin suspends flights to Adelaide, Mildura as ash cloud returns

written by australianaviation.com.au | June 20, 2011

Virgin Australia has suspended all services to and from Adelaide and Mildura for tomorrow (June 21), as the troublesome volcanic ash plume from Chile’s Cordon Caulle volcano makes a return to Australia.

“The current forecast suggests the ash plume will [descend] below 20,000ft over Adelaide and Mildura tomorrow. With this in mind we are suspending these services tomorrow,” Virgin Australia group executive operations, Sean Donohue said.

“Our Volcanic Ash Management Team has been in regular contact with the Bureau of Meteorology and the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre in order to ensure the safety evaluations we make regarding our fleet operations are made on the most accurate and up to the minute data available,” he added.

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Donohue said that the airline was in the process of contacting all affected passengers on tomorrow’s flight schedule and would be discussing alternative travel options with them.

Tiger Airways too has joined Virgin in cancelling flights, with eight flights to be cancelled for June 21, comprising four flights between Adelaide and Melbourne, and four flights between Sydney and Melbourne.

Meanwhile, a Qantas spokeswoman has said the airline will continue to operate flights as normal tomorrow, with “no cancellations or significant delays” expected.

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