27 Jan 2011

Flights grounded after Indonesian volcano erupts

10:11 pm on 27 January 2011

The travel plans of hundreds of passengers have been thrown into disarray after an Indonesian volcano erupted, spewing a large cloud of ash into the air.

The eruption of the Tengger Caldera volcano on Java forced the cancellation of five flights of Australian budget airline Jetstar on Thursday night, AAP reports.

Flights were due to take off from Sydney and Darwin for Denpasar on the popular tourist island of Bali.

Three flights from Denpasar to Perth, Sydney and Darwin were also grounded.

A sixth Jetstar flight from Perth to Denpasar was diverted to Darwin and is due to return to Perth.

It remains unclear if other airlines are affected. Australia's national carrier Qantas does not fly to Denpasar.

Last year, thousands of flights to and from Europe were grounded because of volcanic eruptions in Iceland.