Mount Agung eruption: Indonesia issues highest aviation warning

Nov 27, 2017, 01:04
Mount Agung eruption: Indonesia issues highest aviation warning

The blasts have caused ash to fly more than 2,000 meters into the air, the National Disaster Management Agency in Indonesia reported, with ash plume reaching an altitude of 7,600 meters by late Saturday. However it warned that the movement of ash cloud is highly unpredictable and flights could still be cancelled at short notice.

Made Sugiri, an employee at Mahagiri Panoramic Resort some 10 kilometres from the crater, said a thin layer of volcanic ash reached the area.

Mount Agung on Indonesia's resort island of Bali belched smoke as high as 1,500 meters above its summit sparking an exodus from settlements near the mountain.

Australian airline Jetstar, which cancelled nine flights to and from Bali on Saturday evening, said most of its flights will operate normally Sunday after its senior pilots assessed it was safe to fly.

After Saturday's eruption, which produced a bigger ash cloud than the initial one on Tuesday, Singapore updated its travel advisory for the island, warning that ash clouds could "severely disrupt air travel".

Close												Passengers wait for flight information at Ngurah Rai Airport following the eruption of Mount Agung in Bali Indonesia on Nov. 25
Close Passengers wait for flight information at Ngurah Rai Airport following the eruption of Mount Agung in Bali Indonesia on Nov. 25

It told people within a 7.5km (4.7-mile) exclusion zone to "immediately evacuate" in an "orderly and calm manner".

According to the BBC, increased volcanic activity this year sparked fears of an imminent full-scale eruption involving magma flows, costing "at least $110m in tourism and productivity during the major evacuation".

Bali is a major tourist hub.

Under these circumstances, Garuda Indonesia enforces exemption policy for cancellation fee, rebooking/reroute fee, refund fee, administration fee and other ticket change fees for passengers who have scheduled flights to and from Lombok. About 25,000 people have been prevented from returning to their homes around the volcano since September when activity began for the first time since a 1963 eruption killed about 1,100 people. "Seismic activity is characterized by low frequency earthquakes".

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