Head of Surabaya Airport Authority Airworthiness III Nafhan Syahroni in the opening ceremony stated here on Thursday that the festival is an effort to maintain the tradition of Shawwal as well as the flight safety campaign.
"In some cities on the island of Java, making flying balloons as Shawaal tradition is a routine. But, actually it is quite dangerous related to the flight," he said.
Syahroni further explained that there were already 100 pilot reports related to the flying balloon that reached the flight path, both domestic and international ones.
He added the height of the flown balloon could reach 32,000 feet or equal to the cruising altitude of an aircraft.
The balloon could potentially enter the aircraft engine and damage it which makes the machine can not work.
It is certainly very dangerous to flight safety and threatening crew and passengers.
Therefore, in the second balloon festival in Ponorogo, the public is given education and socialization that it can fly as long as it is tied with a rope and no more than 150 meters with a balloon size of seven meters x four meters.
"Unmanned air balloon disrupts the power of the Extra High Voltage Airline, this air balloon festival provides education and examples of how to fly a controlled air balloon no more than 150 meters," he conveyed.
The procedure of this air balloon flight has been regulated in Ministerial Regulation No. 40 of 2018 on the Use of Air Balloons on Cultural Activities.
"If there is still a violation will be imposed a maximum penalty of two years imprisonment," he said.
In this year, there are 70 participants who follow Ponorogo Air Balloon Festival to get the first winner.
Air Balloon Festival is also held in a number of places in Java where the activity has become a Shawwal tradition or a few days after Eid-Al Fitr. (*)