Entire island evacuated as volcanoes rumble in Bali and Vanuatu

Entire island evacuated as volcanoes rumble in Bali and Vanuatu

Entire island evacuated as volcanoes rumble in Bali and Vanuatu

Heather Handley, the earth sciences professor from Sydney's Macuquarie University, said that the increased tremors suggest that an eruption is "imminent".

The evacuees are scattered in over 500 locations across the island, taking shelter in temporary camps, sports centers and public buildings.

"During the 1963 Mount Agung eruption, obviously the technology was not as good as what we have now, there were no volcanologists urging people to evacuate, that's why the number of victims was high", said Surono, one of the country's leading volcanologists, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.

The exodus from a menacing volcano on the Indonesian tourist island of Bali is nearing 100,000 people, a disaster official said, as hundreds of tremors from the mountain are recorded daily.

"I would definitely be following the advice to stay outside the exclusion zone".

Despite the significant increase in estimated evacuees, the government said it was prepared.

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Ash clouds from volcanic eruptions have disrupted tourism in Bali and other parts of Indonesia in recent years. Lava spread for several kilometers (miles) and people were also killed by lahars - rivers of water and volcanic debris.

"If Mount Agung erupts, I'm in charge of pressing the alarm button", said Nyoman Kasna, a local official.

Officials this week installed warning sirens in several townships.

The mountain, about 70 kilometres to the north-east of the tourist hotspot of Kuta, is among more than 120 active volcanoes in Indonesia.

The indonesian authorities stand ready to divert the aircraft to its destination of Bali, the island's largest tourist destination of Indonesia, where a volcano could erupt at any time, indicated this Wednesday the minister of Transport.

"The principle concerns here are that the volcano can eject volcanic rocks to distances of many kilometers from the crater, and that the volcano could erupt ash and/or emit sulfur dioxide", said Andrews, from the Smithsonian Institution's Global Volcanism Program.

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