Vehicles laden with food, masks and bedding have been dispatched to help more than 57,000 people who have fled a volcano on the tourist island of Bali, as rising magma and increased tremors fuel fears of an imminent eruption.
In 1963, the 3,031-metre Agung hurled ash as high as 20 kilometres, according to volcanologists, and remained active for about a year. The alert status of Agung was raised to the highest possible level on Friday evening, following a spike in seismic activity. In case of eruption, the authorities' contingency plan includes rerouting flights to five regional airports, including those in the cities of Surabaya and Yogjakarta in Java, ABC News Australia reported.
Nearly 75,000 have been forced to flee the area surrounding Mount Agung as it nears a colossal eruption.
In statement made by National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB), it was recorded that activity level of volcano, which is at top level of alarm level in about one week, has been recorded.
If there's an eruption it could force the closure of Bali's worldwide airport.
The agency's spokesman, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, said Tuesday that evacuees are spread across more than 370 locations on the island and their numbers are continuing to rise. At the time, some 50,000 people were being evacuated from a 7-mile radius around the volcano. "My feeling is the mountain will erupt".
President Joko Widodo is to visit the displaced persons at evacuation centers on Tuesday, the official said.
A 12 kilometer exclusion zone has been set up around the volcano, on the northeastern side of Bali and more than 48,000 people have been evacuated. That event was preceded by an increased frequency in earthquakes.
Tremors around Bali's Mount Agung have been steadily increasing, indicating an even higher chance of an eruption.
Ash clouds from volcanoes and eruptions have disrupted tourism in Bali and other parts of Indonesia in the past.