Eruptions at Eyjafjallajökull: Flight Cancellations Due to Extreme Ash Cloud
In 2010, the volcano Eyjafjallajökull in Eyjafjallajökull, Iceland began a series of eruptions that, while not epic in proportion, caused enormous disturbances to air travel across western and northern Europe. Starting initially at Eyjafjallajökull on April 14th, a large ash cloud began to form that shut down almost all plane travel on April 15th, causing the highest level of air travel disruption since World War II over the course of the week following its creation. During this phase of the eruptions, there resulted an estimated 250 million cubic metres of ejected tephra and an ash plume that rose to a height of approximately 9 kilometres (30,000 ft). This equates to the explosive power of a 4 on the volcanic explosivity index. In the case of the Eyjafjallajökull eruptions, the impact on human life was not great in cost of lives, but it rather in displacement of lives. Here, we can see what percent of flights were cancelled at airports across Europe because of this natural disaster during the week it was most severe. It is a prime example of how even though technology has advanced us far enough to travel thousands of miles in a matter of hours, nature still has the ability to render us helpless to its natural processes.