The Canadian Press

Erupting volcano traps Canadians in Bali

Canadians stuck in Bali as Mount Agung erupts, cancelling flights

Some Canadians were trapped in Bali on Monday after Indonesian authorities ordered 100,000 people to flee from an erupting volcano that prompted the closure of the international airport.

Global Affairs Canada said 403 Canadians in Bali have registered with its Registration of Canadians Abroad service.

“As registration is voluntary, this is not necessarily a complete picture of Canadians in the region,” Global Affairs spokeswoman Brianne Maxwell said in an email.

One person who is stuck is Chantal Desjardins, a Montreal-based media personality and standup comic who was due to fly out Tuesday.

Desjardins told The Canadian Press that local reports suggest the biggest eruption was yet to come, so the situation was “getting a little bit real now.”

She was at a hotel about 70 kilometres away, and there was no word on evacuating her area.

Desjardins said according to her airline, the earliest she’ll be able to leave is next Tuesday.

“We were supposed to leave tomorrow and we found out all of the airlines are cancelled and the first flight out is going to be December 5th,” Desjardins said. “So my holiday just got extended by a little bit.”

Bali’s airport was closed early Monday after ash reached its airspace. Flight information boards showed rows of cancellations as tourists arrived at the busy airport expecting to catch flights home.

An airport spokesman said 445 flights were cancelled, stranding about 59,000 travellers. The closure was to be in effect until Tuesday morning, although officials said the situation would be reviewed every six hours.

“We now have to find a hotel and spend more of our money that they’re not going to cover us for when we get home unfortunately,” Canadian tourist Brandon Olsen, who was stranded at Bali’s airport with his girlfriend, told the Associated Press.

Bali is Indonesia’s top tourist destination, with its gentle Hindu culture, surf beaches and lush green interior attracting about five million visitors a year.

Mount Agung has been hurling clouds of white and dark grey ash about 3,000 metres into the atmosphere since the weekend and lava was welling up in the crater, sometimes reflected as a reddish-yellow glow in the ash plumes.

Desjardins was within several kilometres of the volcano a few days ago.

“We saw some of the ashes coming up and we thought ‘oh, this is really cool!’,” she said. “Now, it’s like, maybe I could have watched it on the news and it still could have been cool from another place.”

The country raised its volcano alert to the highest level early Monday and expanded the danger zone to 10 kilometres.

“Apparently, the biggest one (eruption) is yet to come, and it could go off in the next couple of days, it’s getting a little bit scary,” Desjardins said.

Messages were sent to registered Canadians on Monday and the federal department’s advisory for Indonesia was updated over the weekend.

Only one Canadian in the region has requested information, and Maxwell says they are ready to provide consular assistance as needed.

— Canadians requiring emergency consular assistance should contact the nearest Canadian government office or the Global Affairs Canada 24/7 Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa by collect phone call at +1 613 996 8885 or by email at sos@international.gc.ca

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Nanaimo boxers will look to land punches for Ringside Rescue program

Nanaimo Boxing Club holding a fundraiser card Saturday, Nov. 23, at Departure Bay Activity Centre

Harbour City Theatre Alliance builds on tradition with ‘A Christmas Carol’

Local adaptation of the Christmas classic returns to Nanaimo starting Nov. 21

Nanaimo and District Crime Stoppers encourages document shredding

Shredding Day fundraiser happens Saturday, Nov. 23, at Save-On-Foods Brooks Landing

Student tells Nanaimo courtroom she wasn’t allowed to leave indigenous smudging ceremony

Girl cross-examined Monday in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo

Nanaimo woman seeks knitters to make blankets for cats

Dale Burke inspired by creator of Comfort for Critters

Harbour City Theatre Alliance builds on tradition with ‘A Christmas Carol’

Local adaptation of the Christmas classic returns to Nanaimo starting Nov. 21

$2.9 million judgment in B.C. blueberry farm sabotage lawsuit

The new owners saw most of their farm ruined just as they took possession

B.C. to more than double sales tax on vaping products

Tax up from 7 to 20 per cent, tobacco tax up two cents

29 B.C. students in Hong Kong amid tense protests, university siege

Eight UVic and 21 UBC students still in Hong Kong

Site where rockslide occurred along Malahat is too narrow for rock blasting or drilling: Emcon

‘Rockfalls are inevitable, so we try to increase our response times,’ says representative

‘Midget’ no more: Sweeping division name changes coming to minor hockey in Canada

Alpha-numeric division names will be used for the 2020-2021 season and beyond

Ottawa urges CN and union to continue talks as 3,200 workers go on strike

The rail workers began their strike after failing to reach a deal by a midnight deadline

Trans Mountain received $320M in government subsidies in first half 2019: report

The money included $135.8 million in direct subsidies and $183.8 million in indirect subsidies

UPDATED: Vancouver Island’s Joe gets suspended sentence in Teddy the dog cruelty case

Melissa Tooshley expected in court on Thursday in same case

Most Read