Mt. Redoubt, tornadoes, snow nix flights

Due to a mid-morning eruption (re-eruption?) of Mt. Redoubt, Alaska Airlines has suspended all flights into and out of Anchorage, at least until early Friday morning.

Volcano ash is serious stuff; it can limit visibility and ruin engines.  So the airline is taking no chances: 45 flights were canceled earlier this week due to previous eruptions from Mt. Redoubt, leaving more than 4,000 travelers stuck at the airport, at home, or somewhere they didn’t plan to be.

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If you’re scheduled to fly to or from Alaska, check in with alaskaair.com or 1-800-ALASKAAIR.  In the meantime, you might want to follow the mountain’s activities on the Alaska Volcano Observatory Web site.  It has photos, seismic graphs, airport flight status reports, and instructions for collecting ash fall – finally another use for those Ziploc bags!

(Photograph of Mt. Redoubt taken from Diamond Ridge near Homer, by Dennis Anderson. At 9:50 Am  March 26, 2009)

Folks are also ending up stuck at airports all across the country today due to snow in Denver and tornado activity in the south, so if you’re going anywhere, be sure to check in with your airline before you leave the house.