Indonesia is preparing for an imminent volcano eruption, with Mount Agung exhibiting “heightened unrest”.
The volcano is located on the popular holiday island of Bali, northwest of Australia.
Many Australian tourists frequent the island for vacations year-round, and the country’s Foreign Office has issued a fresh warning due to the volcano threat.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is the Australian equivalent of the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).
IS IT SAFE TO TRAVEL TO BALI?
Bali volcano: DFAT has updated its travel advice as Mount Agung threatens to erupt
Past eruptions of Agung volcano have shown this volcano’s potential to cause significant impacts to Bali
It urges travellers to exercise a “high degree of caution” upon visiting Indonesia, including Bali.
DFAT has updated its travel advice today, reflecting the “recent increased volcanic activity” on the island.
It said: “Past eruptions of Agung volcano have shown this volcano’s potential to cause significant impacts to the island of Bali, including the potential for widespread ash fall outside the declared danger area surrounding the volcano.
“Depending on the weather conditions at the time of an eruption, an ash cloud could affect flights and ash fall may impact Denpasar and neighbouring airports in East Java and Lombok, causing widespread disruption to the travelling public.
Bali volcano: DFAT has urged travellers to plan ahead to avoid disruptions
“Contact your airline or tour operator directly to confirm travel plans.
“Monitor local media reports and follow the instructions of local authorities.”
In its wider travel advice, DFAT warns of Indonesia’s ongoing threat of volcanic eruptions.
It said: “Indonesia’s active volcanoes can erupt at any time and cause widespread loss of life and destruction.
“Volcanic ash can cause breathing difficulties, particularly for people with chronic respiratory ailments such as asthma, bronchitis and emphysema.”
Bali volcano: Mount Agung is on the brink of an eruption
DFAT advises travellers to:
- Make contingency plans in case you are affected.
- Make sure you have access to additional money.
- Contact your airline or travel insurer for assistance.
There have so far been no disruptions to flights travelling from Australia to Bali.
Some Australian airlines, including Virgin Australia and Jetstar, are taking extra fuel on planes in case there is an eruption and they have to turn back.
Over 70,000 people have been evacuated from the local area surrounding Mount Agung.
The volcano hasn’t erupted since 1963, when 1000 died after having only minutes to flee.