The effects of the volcanic ash cloud phenomenon is creeping into the automotive industry. A spokesperson from BMW Mathias Schmidt revealed to Bloomberg that the operations at the company’s plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina may be put on hold if trans-Atlantic flights don’t get the green light within the next two days.

The flight cancelations will disrupt the parts supply chain which involves BMW sending parts to the US plant via air. The Spartanburg plant assembles BMW’s X5 and X6 SUVs and up to 600 cars are rolled out per day. We believe that if the airport shutdown continues, we will see more and more stories on plant shutdowns in the news.

The volcanic ash cloud has been covering airspace in Europe since Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano erupted on April 14th. Airports from Dublin to Moscow have been forced to shut down and it is costing airline companies up to US$300 million a day in revenue.