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Iceland ash hits US flights
What volcanic ash does to planes
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Brussels - One flight out of four in Europe has been grounded due to the ash cloud caused by an erupting volcano in Iceland, an official from the European air-traffic control body said on Thursday.
"It's the first time in the history of European air traffic that we are faced with such a phenomenon," Eurocontrol's deputy head of operations Brian Flynn said in a press conference in Brussels.
He added that "there may be flights cancelled on Friday as well" if wind or rain does not sweep the ash cloud away.
Flynn said that air traffic had been completely shut down in eight European countries: Britain, Ireland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark.
The official indicated that on a normal day there are around 28 000 scheduled flights over European skies.