Denpasar, Bali (ANTARA News) - Four airline companies have canceled flights to and from Bali, following the eruption of Mount Agung in the afternoon on Saturday, despite authorities assurance that the airport still operated normally.
"Regarding cancellations, it is their decisions, which certainly were taken after evaluation and in consideration of safety risks of passengers to and from Bali," Balis international airports spokesman Arie Ahsanurrohim said.
He stated that three of the four airliners are Australian flagged airlines, namely Virgin Airlines, Jetstar Airways, and Qantas Airways, while the other one is KLM from the Netherlands.
The total number of arrivals and departures being cancelled was 16, with 12 departures from Bali to Sydney, Adelaide, and Melbourne by Jetstar and to Brisbane by Virgin Airlines; two to Sydney; and one to Amsterdam by KLM.
Virgin Airlines has also cancelled flights to Bali from Port Hedland, KLM from Singapore, and Jetstar from Perth and Townsville Queensland, Australia, and Singapore.
Qantas also diverted its flight from Sydney to Bali to Darwin, while two Jetstar flights were diverted to Melbourne and Adelaide.
One Jetstar flight to Bali returned to Melbourne.
"With regard to Jetstar, we indeed received information that the cancellation was made because of Mount Agungs activity," he stated.
Arie added that until now, there had not been any diversion of flights to airports close to Bali.
He explained that domestic flights by national airlines remained normal. According to reports from pilots, no volcanic ash was found based upon visual observation.
"Balis Ngurah Rai airport is still operating normally and so its air space," Arie revealed.
Source: ANTARA News