Barcelona airspace ban to last until October 2
Restrictions on light aircraft over Catalan capital imposed in response to request from Spanish government delegate
The airspace over Barcelona will be restricted this weekend on account of Sunday’s planned independence referendum. Spain’s civil aviation authority, part of the Ministry of Public Works, issued the order to restrict airspace over the Catalan capital and surroundings after a request from the Spanish government’s delegation to Catalonia. However, the area over Barcelona’s El Prat airport will be exempt from the ban.
Citing security reasons, the airspace ban went into effect on Friday and will be in place until midnight on Monday October 2. However, the ministry insists that the restrictions apply only to light aircraft and helicopters, and rejects the suggestion that the ban is an attempt to prevent aerial images of events related to the referendum being taken, such as protests or demonstrations.
Restrictions “not unusual”
In fact, the ministry insists that “it is not unusual” for restrictions to be placed on Barcelona’s airspace, such as, for example, Catalonia’s national day on September 11, when the Catalan police applied for a ban on aircraft above the city. The ministry also cited large sporting events as examples when airspace restrictions are put in place, such as the Formula 1 races at the Montmeló circuit or Champions League matches at the Camp Nou stadium.