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Flights set to resume normal service

Flights into and out of Ireland are expected to get back to normal later today after the return of volcanic ash from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano closed some airports over the weekend, the Irish Times reports.

Dublin airport was badly affected with almost 300 flights cancelled last night and this morning, affecting the travel plans of at least 36,000 passengers.

Airports in Donegal, Sligo, Belfast, Galway and Knock closed yesterday morning, followed by Dublin airport at 7p.m. North Atlantic overflights through Irish airspace were unaffected.

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Cork, Shannon and Knock airports are currently operating as normal while Waterford and Galway reopened at 6 a.m. Sligo resumed services at 10 a.m., while Dublin reopened at midday. Donegal airport is not due to open again until 2 p.m.

The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) announced the extension of airspace closure late yesterday after earlier imposing restrictions on a number of airports.

The authority said the move came after extensive observations of the drift of the ash cloud. Volcanic activity and the latest weather forecasts indicated “an increased quantity of ash over Irish airspace.”

The latest closures came after northwesterly winds pushed high concentrations of ash from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano southeastwards from Iceland.

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The IAA said the outlook for the coming days is positive and it does not anticipate any further restrictions relating to volcanic ash at Irish airports for at least the next 48 hours.