Volcanic Ash Cloud Halts Bali Flights

A string of flights to and from Bali have been cancelled as a volcano on the nearby island of Java continues to spew ash.

Mount Bromo erupted early Thursday, prompting the cancellation of more than 30 international flights as ash continued to cloud the sky and drifted into airspace over Bali, reports AFP.

Thousands of foreign tourists remain stranded on the island as Jetstar, Virgin Blue, Cathay Pacific, KLM, Singapore Airlines, China Airlines, Korean Air and Qatar Airways scrap flights.

"We have to take a safety-first approach," Jetstar spokesman Simon Westway tells Australian radio. "The complexity is that while visibility can come and go, there is volcanic ash in the vicinity of Denpasar airport."

Sherly Yunita, a spokeswoman for Bali's Denpasar airport tells the news outlet some domestic and international airlines were continuing to operate.

"It depends on the airline's decision," says Yunita.

Indonesia, which lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire, is home to several active volcanoes. Even mild eruptions can prompt volcanic ash scares.

Photo, Thomas Hirsch, Wikimedia Commons
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