Published: Sat, June 30, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

More Than 400 Flights Cancelled As Volcano Forces Bali Shutdown

More Than 400 Flights Cancelled As Volcano Forces Bali Shutdown

The National Disaster Mitigation Agency has also informed that almost 450 flights were cancelled.

Operations at Bali's Ngurah Rai Denpasar International Airport have resumed after a temporary shut down on Friday morning. Volcanic ash is a potentially deadly threat to aircraft that can cause engines to "flame out".

Mount Agung was spotted erupting on Thursday (June 28) and it was predicted that the ash would reach the airport on Friday.

An eruption at Agung in November also stranded thousands and pounded Bali's lucrative tourism industry, the backbone of its economy.

The airport's online flight schedule showed Singapore Airlines and KLM flights scheduled to arrive Friday evening.

More than 20 flights across Jetstar, Qantas, Virgin and Air Asia were disrupted between Thursday night and Friday morning due to the ash cloud moving toward Denpasar airport, which is now closed.

It added that winds could carry the ash southwest toward Bali's worldwide airport and Java, Indonesia's most densely populated island.

Despite the eruption the volcano's status has not been raised by Indonesia's volcanology agency and remained at alert level, while the Volcano Observatory Notice For Aviation has issued an orange level warning.

Bali's main worldwide gateway will be closed until at least Friday evening, according to officials who spoke to AFP news agency. It said the situation will be reviewed at midday.

"Denpasar Airport is now closed and we are monitoring the advice from the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center and our team of senior pilots and meteorologists will make an assessment when flights can be resumed", said the statement. Mount Agung is about 70km northeast of Bali's tourist hotspot of Kuta.

It had a dramatic increase in activity last year, forcing the evacuation of tens of thousands of people, but had quietened by early this year. Government seismologists monitor more than 120 active volcanoes.

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