Emirates cancelled flights to Bali yesterday, but has tentative plans to operate a flight today at 6pm
The airport in Bali will remain closed for a second day as a volcano on the Indonesian island continued to rumble, prompting more flight cancellations while authorities scrambled to assist stranded passengers.
The Ngurah Rai International Airport at the popular Asian tourist spot will be shut until 7 a.m. Wednesday, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for Indonesia’s National Disaster Mitigation Agency said in a Twitter post.
As of Monday afternoon, 445 flights and thousands of tourists were affected, Air Transport Director General Secretary Pramintohadi Sukarno said in a statement.
Anticipating a larger eruption at Mount Agung, the government raised the alert status to the highest level on Monday, as an ash cloud soared as high as 7,142 meters from sea level, moving west-southwest.
Ash spreading across the skies is dangerous for aircraft as jet engines may not be able to handle the debris hurled from the volcano. The Bali airport handles about 2,600 international flights a week, according to CAPA Centre for Aviation.
Emirates, which operates a double daily flight to Bali, cancelled this morning's scheduled deparature of flight EK398, but provisionally plans to operate it at 6pm, Dubai time.
"Transit passengers bound for Bali/Denpasar (DPS) who are currently in Dubai International Airport will be given the option to travel to a destination near to Bali/Denpasar (DPS) on the Emirates network or to their original point of departure if they so choose," Emriates said.
"These dates and times are provisional and subject to the operational status of Bali/Denpasar International Airport (DPS)."
Passengers are requested to check the website www.emirates.com for the latest flight timings.