Ash from Mount Agung forces Bali airport to stay shut for third day
Plumes of ash from a rumbling volcano forced Indonesian authorities to close Bali's airport for a third day on Wednesday (Nov 29), as a threatened eruption stranded tourists and forced mass evacuations.
In a twitter post, an airport spokesperson said due to the volcanic ashes of Mount Agung, I Gusti Ngurah Rai airport will remain closed from Nov 29 to Nov 30.
Tens of thousands of frightened people have fled their homes near Mount Agung, which looms over the resort island, as experts raised the alert level to maximum and warned it could erupt at any moment.
Towering columns of thick grey smoke have been belching from the volcano since last week, and in the last few days have begun shooting into the sky, forcing all flights to be grounded until at least Wednesday morning.
"The Volcanic Ash Advisory shows that the plane routes have been covered by volcanic ash, this is dangerous for the flights," Wisnu Darjono from the air traffic agency AirNav official said, referring to a global network of experts that supplies volcano-related information.
As of Tuesday some 443 flights had been cancelled.
The airport on nearby Lombok island - has opened and closed several times in the past few days. It is currently open but may yet be shuttered again, officials said.