Statement

Eruption of Mount Sangeang Api, Indonesia – update at 5:15pm

31 May 2014

Airservices continues to monitor three separate ash plumes resulting from an eruption of Sangeang Api on Sangeang Island in Indonesia on 30 May, with the assistance of the Bureau of Meteorology’s Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC).

The Darwin VAAC continues to keep the airlines, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority and Airservices updated with detailed information on the volcanic ash clouds.

All non-emergency flights in and out of Darwin have been suspended.

Flights heading through northern Australia to overseas destinations are being re-routed.

Passengers are advised to check with their airlines for further information.

The first ash cloud, which remains between 20,000 and 50,000 feet (6-15km), is in central Australia and currently moving in a south easterly direction at approximately 100 knots.

However, it is dissipating quickly and is now not expected to extend far into Queensland or affect flights to and from Brisbane tomorrow.

A second cloud at about 45,000 feet is currently over Darwin and is moving east at about 60 knots. This cloud is also forecast to dissipate before reaching Cairns and Townsville.

A third ash cloud is currently north-east of Bali, Indonesia, and not expected to enter Australian airspace.

Airservices National Operations Centre is working with airlines to minimise disruption for the travelling public and provide them with the latest information.

We are also working closely with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA).

Decisions on whether or not flights will operate will be made by individual airlines and operators based on a careful assessment of all available information.

More information is available from the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre and Civil Aviation Safety Authority.