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Volcano erupts on Indonesian island of Bali, delaying flights


Mount Agung volcano spews smoke and ash in Bali, causing flight cancellations at the island resort, and closing the airport at nearby Lombok airport.

VP Corporate of PT Garuda Indonesia Hengki Heriandono said Garuda Indonesia will continue to monitor the situation and developments related to the activities of Mount Agung, especially the activity of the spread of volcanic ash that can disrupt flight safety. A Level 3 alert has been issued by the National Agency for Disaster Management, with officials recommending no public activities taking place within 6=7.5 kilometers - 3.5 to 4.5 miles. The Malaysian-based airline has also rescheduled two or flights and has contacted affected passengers by email to offer a change of flight or route, as reported in a statement.

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

Bali is an important tourist centre and the worldwide airport of Denpasar, the capital of the island, is operating normally for the moment, even if some airlines chose to cancel their flights.

The Balinese volcano erupted in 1963 killing more than 1,000 people.

The emissions are the second this week alone igniting warnings from experts that a more powerful eruption is imminent
The emissions are the second this week alone igniting warnings from experts that a more powerful eruption is imminent

Major evacuations saw more than 120,000 residents forced to flee their homes in September, when Mount Agung showed signs of erupting.

Bali is Indonesia's top tourist destination and its gentle Hindu culture, surf beaches and lush green interior attract about 5 million visitors a year.

Staff at Indonesia's volcano monitoring centre said it was not just pulverised rock being blown out of Mt Agung, but magma has now reached the volcano's surface.

Many returned home after the volcano's activity waned, but fresh smoke has sparked a further exodus and around 25,000 people have been evacuated to more than 200 temporary shelters.

Indonesia sits on the "Pacific Ring of Fire" and has more than 120 active volcanoes.




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