View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Monday, 19 April 2010

Monday 19 April

After an overnight frost, the day dawned bright - but that was not to last. Several showers, most with hail, have been passing over and the wind is brisk. Although we have managed 10C / 50F today, it has mostly been around 6C / 43F.

The volcano in Iceland that has been spewing out a lot of ash in recent days, causing havoc in European air travel, appears to have changed to spewing out lava, and less ash. There have been calls from airlines to review the blanket ban on flights - they are losing £130m / $200m a day. I feel this to be premature. Reports have emerged that two fighter jets were damaged by volcanic ash, and a Met Office plane encountered dangerous levels of ash. However, the weather forecasts hint at a change by Friday, when strong southwesterlies could sweep it all away.

The British government has enlisted the Royal Navy to get Britons, stranded across the Channel home; arrangements are being made with Spain to fly people stranded in America, Asia or Australia in there, thence to be taken to the UK over land or sea.

The latest news is that UK airspace, from Scotland south, will be reopened in the course of Tuesday.