The Jakarta Post
An empty beach in Senggigi, North Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, on Aug. 9. (JP/Seto Wardhana.)
The Tourism Ministry has reactivated its Tourism Crisis Center (TCC) following the earthquakes that struck Lombok on Sunday.
Tourism Minister Arief Yahya said in a statement that the center's main task was to monitor the 3As, namely tourist attractions, amenities and accessibility.
As reported by kompas.com, Arief said access would be the TCC's main focus to support the movement of foreign tourists, through the airport, seaports, bus terminals, roads, basic infrastructure and other utilities.
After ensuring all access is clear, the next step is to request airlines, airports and state-run air navigation company Airnav to increase the number of aircraft, airport operational hours and slot times for airplanes landing and taking off, as happened with previous quakes.
"People tend to move to a safer tourist location, hence we must provide more access to offer them safety and convenience," said Arief.
On Sunday morning, Lombok International Airport general manager I Gusti Ngurah Ardita stated that the number of passengers had started to increase.
"Currently the average number of passengers is 4,500; the regular number is between 5,000 and 6,000," said Arief.
Additionally, the TCC will also monitor amenities related to room conditions and capacity and dangerous locations. As for attractions, the team is set to conduct checks regarding which places are safe to visit.
"Although Lombok is still in the emergency response period since the first earthquake, its tourism has to recover immediately since we will not see the results of our promotion today right away. Since Lombok is also one of our priority tourist destinations, the ministry has to conduct special monitoring," added Arief. (kes)