Flights cancelled for second time in 10 days after Mexican volcano spews ash

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MEXICO CITY — For the second time in 10 days, the Popocatepetl volcano east of Mexico City spewed ash into the sky, forcing cancellation of flights at the nearby Puebla International Airport.

A statement from the government's airport oversight agency Wednesday said operations in Puebla were suspended at 6:30 a.m. (7:30 a.m. EST) to allow airport personnel to clean runways and other areas covered in ash. Officials expected the airport to resume normal operations soon. The suspension affected three flights Wednesday to Houston, Monterrey and Guadalajara.

On February 15, a similar eruption caused the cancellation of three flights at the airport.

According to Mexico's National Center for Disaster Prevention, a series of explosions at the volcano overnight tossed hot rocks 760 yards (700 meters) down the volcano's cone and sent a column of ash nearly 2 ½ miles (4 kilometers) into the sky.

The national civil protection agency said Wednesday the volcano is experiencing a period of frequent low-intensity explosions following a series of tremors on Sunday. Similar episodes were observed in May and July 2013, and likely have to do with the growth of a new dome.

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