Severe flight disruptions are currently reported as of the afternoon (local time) of Monday, December 24, at Catania-Fontanarossa International Airport (CTA) located in Catania province (Sicily) after a massive explosion rocked nearby Mount Etna resulting in a huge plume of ash. Officials at CTA have reportedly closed the airspace above the airport and canceled all flights as of 14:00. Reports indicate incoming flights are being rerouted to regional airports nearby. It remains unclear when normal operations at the airport will resume. Disruptions are likely to persist throughout the day; residuals disruptions cannot be ruled out in the coming days.
Mount Etna is one of the most active volcanoes in the world and is the highest elevation volcano in mainland Europe. It is commonly active multiple times per year and last saw a major eruption in 1992. Local residents reported several earthquakes across the region, including in Catania, before the December 24 eruption.
Individual traveling to and from CTA are advised to confirm the status of their flight prior departing for the airport and allow for extra time to reach their destination.
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