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Friday, 17 January 2020

Taal Volcano Update No 3: Two people have been killed and the number of evacuees reached almost 100,000 after the eruption of the Taal volcano in the Philippines: Existing fissures widening

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  • An increase in seismic activity concerns scientists.
  • Scientists fear that something much bigger is coming from the volcano!
  • Existing fissures are widening
  • Receding of the shoreline has been observed around the whole of Taal Lake
  • A hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours to days
  • Two people have been killed and the number of evacuees reached almost 100,000

Two people have been killed and the number of evacuees reached almost 100,000, after the eruption of the Taal volcano in the Philippines. People living within 14 km of the volcano have left their homes for security reasons, local authorities said. Despite the risk, many citizens refuse to evacuate and have returned to their homes. For this reason, police and military are mobilized to move them out of the danger area. The Volcanology Science Institute of the Philippines has warned that Taal can erupt at any moment, pile up ash and lava flows and tear off nearby settlements. After its eruption on January 12, a large number of flights to and from Manila airport were cancelled. Taal, the world's smallest volcano, is one of the 10 active in the Philippines.

TAAL VOLCANO BULLETIN 17 January 2020 

Activity in the Main Crater in the past 24 hours has been characterized by steady steam emission and infrequent weak explosions that generated dark grey ash plumes 100 to 800 meters tall and dispersed ash southwest to the west of the Main Crater. Existing fissures identified in barangays of Lemery, Agoncillo, Talisay, and San Nicolas in Batangas Province have been observed to widen by a few centimetres.

A steaming fissure has been newly observed on the northern slopes of Taal Volcano Island. Receding of the shoreline has been observed around the whole of Taal Lake. The Philippine Seismic Network plotted a total of six hundred thirty-four (634) volcanic earthquakes since 1:00 PM, January 12, 2020. One hundred seventy-four (174) of these registered at magnitudes M1.2 – M4.1 and were felt at Intensities I – V. Since 5:00 AM on January 16, 2020, until 5:00 AM today, there were sixty-five (65) volcanic earthquakes plotted, two (2) of these registered at magnitudes M1.3 -M3.1 and were both felt at Intensity I.

The Taal Volcano Network recorded nine hundred forty-four (944) volcanic earthquakes including twenty-nine (29) low-frequency earthquakes. Such intense seismic activity likely signifies continuous magmatic intrusion beneath the Taal edifice, which may lead to further eruptive activity. Alert Level 4 still remains in effect over Taal Volcano. This means that hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours to days.

DOST-PHIVOLCS strongly reiterates total evacuation of Taal Volcano Island and high-risk areas as identified in the hazard maps within the 14-km radius from Taal Main Crater and along the Pansipit River Valley where fissuring has been observed. Residents around Taal Volcano are advised to guard against the effects of heavy and prolonged ashfall. Civil aviation authorities must advise pilots to avoid the airspace around Taal Volcano as airborne ash and ballistic fragments from the eruption column pose hazards to aircraft. DOST-PHIVOLCS is continually monitoring the eruption and will update all stakeholders of further developments. Phivolcs

Volcano Eruptions 2020

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