Citilink resumes operation following reopening of Bali airport

Ann Santiago
June 30, 2018

Thousands of local and foreign passengers were stranded on Friday as Bali shuttered its global airport after the Indonesian resort island's Mount Agung volcano shot a thick plume of ash and smoke thousands of metres into the sky, officials said.

It said it would remain closed until at least 7 p.m. local time.

The eruption, which began on Thursday, fired a towering column of ash 2,500 metres (8,200ft) into the sky, and reddish flames lit up the volcano's crater overnight.

Ash cloud Mount Agung produces can pose a threat to aircraft flying in the area.

Jetstar has resumed flights to Bali on Friday after earlier cancellations due to Indonesia's Mount Agung volcano spewing water vapour and ash into the atmosphere.

An eruption at Mount Agung, about 70km from the coastal holiday area of Kuta, forced the evacuation of tens of thousands of people past year.

The National Disaster Mitigation Agency said tests showed there was no ash in Ngurah Rai International Airport's airspace and the airport reopened at 2.30pm (6.30pm NZ Time).

The queue at Bali's worldwide airport.

"The airport could be closed again if the eruption affects flight safety".

Activity at the volcano was high last year and forced the evacuation of tens of thousands of people, but it had been quieter this year.

Talking more about the Volcano eruption, the regional volcanic ash advisory centre in Australia's Darwin said that in the coming days winds could carry the ash southwest toward Java which is popularly known for Indonesia's most densely island.

AirAsia's Flight QZ509, scheduled to leave Singapore at 9.05pm to Denpasar was also cancelled.

They said some 10 domestic flights were also cancelled, affecting more than 1,700 passengers. However, the alert level for the volcano has not been raised and authorities are still monitoring Mount Agung, which is located in northeastern Bali.

Indonesia is situated on the Pacific "Ring of Fire", a vast zone of geological instability where the collision of tectonic plates causes frequent quakes and major volcanic activity.

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