To celebrate Idul Fitri, a hot air balloon festival will take place on Wednesday in Ponorogo, East Java, with people from surrounding villages expected to participate.
According to Edy Sucipta from the Ponorogo’s Police public relations division, the festival was also intended to educate people to release hot air balloons in a responsible manner, as they were often released without permission, which endangered safety.
“The festival has become a tradition we hold every Idul Fitri,” he explained during an interview with Tempo.co on Monday.
Edy added that the festival would not affect any aircraft flights, particularly of military aircraft.
Airnav Yogyakarta stated that two factors determined the safety of a hot air balloon flight: the balloon’s shape and size and how high it was flown. The average size of a hot air balloon should be about 7 meters in diameter with a height of no more than 20 meters.
Starting from 2018, the festival was held in Jepun field in Balong subdistrict, under the watchful eyes of officials, said Edy.
“Tomorrow marks the second time we will hold the festival in Ponogoro, and we aim to make this a tradition to encourage safety and prevent risks,” he said.
Despite the aims of the event, 46 hot air balloons of various sizes took flight without permission in the days leading up to the festival in Slahung, Sukorejo, Jetis, Sampung, Balong, Bungkal, and Siman.