Indonesian Volcano Poses Increased Threat to Air Traffic

Dec 27, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Indonesian authorities have elevated the threat level that Anak Krakatau poses to nearby communities and air traffic. The BBC reports that the disaster management agency in Indonesia (BNPB) has raised the alert from a level two to a level three, the second-highest level possible.

The elevated alert comes amid increased volcanic activity at Anak Krakatau, a volcano located in the Sunda Strait, which caused last week’s fatal tsunami. In addition to a recently expanded (three-mile) exclusion zone around the volcano, flights in the region are being rerouted with concerns of additional airspace closures lingering.

Indonesia’s AirNav air traffic control agency said that 20 to 25 flights have been affected by the volcanic eruption. The agency is on red alert due to the plume of volcanic ash dispersed into the atmosphere as a result of the partial eruption. The affected flights are reportedly traveling to and from Australia, Singapore and various cities in the Middle East.

Indonesia’s largest airport and main international port of entry, Jakarta International Airport (CGK), is roughly 40-50 miles away from the edge of the volcanic ash, which has resulted in longer approach and departure patterns. AirNav Indonesia noted that the current impact has been minimal with the potential of a few diversions or longer flight tracks. The air traffic control agency is still monitoring the situation in the region.

Flights are seen avoiding the volcanic ash from the eruption of Anak Krakatau (Image via Flightradar24)
Flights are seen avoiding the volcanic ash from the eruption of Anak Krakatau. (Image via Flightradar24)

In the past week, two major volcanic eruptions have impacted flights. Three days ago, Mount Etna on the Italian island of Sicily erupted leading to the complete closure of a major airport on the island, Catania Airport (CTA). Flights were canceled, diverted and delayed for hours as a result of Mount Etna’s eruption. Catania Airport has since reopened and operations are back to full capacity.

Volcanic ash, though appearing fine like smoke, consists of very fine particulates that can accumulate on the exterior of an aircraft and in the engines. This accumulation of ash can potentially lead to reduced engine performance and even engine failure or flameout. A noteworthy example of a volcanic eruption resulting in an engine failure was the 1989 incident involving KLM Flight 867, which suffered complete engine failure resulting in an emergency landing at Anchorage International Airport and more than $8 million in damage.

(Featured image by Adek Berry/Contributor/Getty Images)

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases within the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn a $200 statement credit after your first Delta purchase within the first three months. Offer ends 7/28/21.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months and a $200 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
0% on purchases for 12 months
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.