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New Zealand volcano flight disruption

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21 November 2012 by Luke McCormick

The volcanic eruption of Mount Tongariro on New Zealand's North Island has created an ash cloud, forcing flight delays and cancellations.

Air New Zealand has had to cancel some services between Taupo and Wellington.

The airline says it is working with the country's Civil Aviation Authority and MetService to monitor the cloud, caused by the volcano's first eruption on more than a century.

The Ministry of Civil Defence said "minor volcanic activity" at the Tongariro - Te Maari craters "could be hazardous in the immediate vicinity of the craters".

"Light volcanic ash fall can be anticipated downwind of Tongariro", it said, potentially affecting the Waikato, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne and Bay of Plenty areas.

The Foreign Office has warned travellers to check for flight delays or cancellations. Those travelling to the Central Plateau Region are advised to check conditions with local authorities.

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