Bali volcano eruption halts some flights, including from Singapore

Bali's Mount Agung erupting on June 28, 2018.
Bali's Mount Agung erupting on June 28, 2018.PHOTO: INDONESIA'S CENTRE OF VOLCANOLOGY AND GEOLOGICAL HAZARD MITIGATION

JAKARTA (REUTERS, THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Several flights were cancelled or rescheduled on Thursday (June 28) when a volcano erupted on the Indonesian holiday island of Bali, sending a column of ash and smoke at least 2km into the air, officials said.

Bali airport was operating normally, but some airlines said they had cancelled flights to and from the island known for its beaches and temples.

"The eruption of Mount Agung today has impacted several of our flights to and from Bali," budget carrier AirAsia said in a statement, adding at least 27 flights - from Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Perth, Jakarta, Surabaya and Manila - had been cancelled or rescheduled.

Jetstar and Virgin Australia also cancelled flights, according to media reports.

Hundreds of passengers were expected to be affected.

Mount Agung, an active volcano in northeastern Bali, has been puffing since late last year (2017). In December, minor explosive eruptions closed the airport.

Airlines avoid flying through volcanic ash as it can damage aircraft engines, clog fuel and cooling systems and hamper visibility.