KLM pushes to resume passenger flights after tests

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The Independent Online

KLM, the Dutch subsidiary of Air France, says it has flown a plane through the cloud of volcanic ash covering Europe without suffering any damage.

KLM carried out a test flight above Dutch air space yesterday. It says initial inspections afterward showed no damage or irregularities from the ash in the air that has led to a ban on air travel over much of Europe since Friday.

The airline says it now plans to return seven airplanes without passengers to Amsterdam from Duesseldorf today.

"We hope to receive permission as soon as possible after that to start up our operation and to transport our passengers to their destinations," said Chief Executive Peter Hartman, who was aboard yesterday's flight.

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