Authorities in Ireland and the rest of Europe are starting to think the worst about the Iceland volcano ash -- that it may ruin the vacation season this year.

It could not have come at a worse time for European countries,especially Ireland which are battling very tough economic conditions to begin with and now face disruption from the ash cloud for the foreseen future.

Last time this particular volcano erupted back in the 1820s it lasted for three years which would force entirely new transatlantic routes to be planned.

Already many planes are flying over the Arctic or taking a southern route to get to Europe to avoid the volcanic ash altogether.

All those possibilities are becoming more real with each passing day as the ash clouds continue to spew fort and the aviation world is in crisis mode.

The new routes may be instituted sooner rather than later. It is better to add on a few extra hours and ensure a safe passage than leave passengers stranded at an airport somewhere.

It is possible to plan new routes in such a fashion but no one at this point wants to make definite commitments.

We are dealing with what insurance companies term an "act of God" one of those unknowable events that could end tomorrow or continue for much longer

While authorities are hoping and praying that the volcano will simmer down and stop shooting the lava, even the most experienced scientists are unable to exactly pinpoint whether or not that will happen.

Meanwhile travelers and tourism authorities everywhere are on bended knee hoping this is an isolated late Spring crisis and it does not continue into peak travel period.

If it does then already depressed markets will get even more so.