Mount Agung in Indonesia

Mount Agung in Indonesia

Few destinations attract the kind of allure that Indonesia’s Bali has. Over the past decade, Bali has emerged as an exciting tourist spot for family vacationers, backpackers and honeymooners alike. However, things are quite tense in the exotic destination right now as Mount Agung, a volcano in the region, is facing the threat of an aggressive eruption. As a result, a high alert has been declared in Bali with over 25,000 people in the exclusion zone being evacuated in the last week itself. Yesterday, the I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali was shut down and flights were cancelled on account of the volcanic ash rising as high as 3,400 metres. And now, Indonesia’s navigation agency Airnav Indonesia has extended the airspace closure over the airport till Wednesday. Close to 80,000 passengers have been stranded at the airport as a result of the cancellation of around 445 flights. Also Read - Ms. & Mrs. Gorgeous Worldwide Beauty Pageant to be Held in Bali in May



This extension came after the volcano spewed fresh ash over its slopes overnight. The wind blowing from north to the south at between 5 to 10 knots, is carrying ash from Mt. Agung west to Denpasar, which is just 70 km away from the volcano. Volcanic Ash Advisory Centers (VAAC), which is a global network of meteorologists and volcanologists under the International Civil Aviation Organization, has indicated that the aircraft’s guiding traffic path has been covered with volcanic ash. This puts flights taking off or landing at the airport at high risk. The volcanic ash can also obstruct blades in jet and turboprop engines resulting in complete engine failure. It is therefore prudent for the airport to stay shut till the threat is cleared. DO SEE Things to Do in Bali: Best Activities In Indonesia’s Fascinating Island Also Read - Indonesian Man Dresses Up as Spider-Man To Clean Up Plastic Waste, Urges Others to Do the Same

The airport was scheduled to resume operations this morning at 7 am but will now reopen after another 24 hours – at 7 am on Wednesday, November 29. As a result, several tourists are now stranded in Bali since the Ngurah Rai International Airport is the only international air connection to Bali. As flight safety is of utmost importance, the airport and its stakeholders have decided to take precautions by shutting down operations till the threat of Mount Agung volcano eruption reduces. The volcano had last erupted in the year 1963 killing 1,600 people. The authorities want to ensure that no such unfortunate accidents happen this time round. Considering that Bali is Indonesia’s most popular tourist spot and also one of the most famous in all of Asia, it is better to delay flight proceedings that put passenger lives at risk. Also Read - Malaysia PM Defends Criticism Over CAA, Says 'Need to be Frank' Despite India's Palm Oil Curbs