EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS – More flexible rules and a new crisis cell are Brussels' latest moves to counter mounting criticism from airlines and some member states following last month's airspace shut-down in reaction to the volcanic ash from Iceland.
Under the fresh guidelines, member states will be able to minimise flying restrictions when confronted with volcanic ash, so as to avoid another generalised air ban in Europe. The week-long ban in mid-April left millions of passengers stranded and cost the industry billions of euros.
The recommendations were tabled jointly by the EU commission, Eurocontrol, an air traffic control body pooling data from 38 European countries and the so-far absent European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
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EU tables new safety guidelines on volcanic ash