Phivolcs reports another ‘phreatomagmatic burst’ at Taal Volcano

Benise Balaoing, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 31 2022 01:17 PM | Updated as of Mar 31 2022 01:18 PM

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Taal Volcano in Batangas is seen from Lipa City emitting plumes after a phreatomagmatic burst in the morning of March 26, 2022, prompting the Phivolcs to place the volcano under Alert Level 3 due to magmatic unrest. Val Cuenca, ABS-CBN News
Taal Volcano in Batangas is seen from Lipa City emitting plumes after a phreatomagmatic burst in the morning of March 26, 2022, prompting the Phivolcs to place the volcano under Alert Level 3 due to magmatic unrest. Val Cuenca, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — The Taal Volcano in Batangas province had another phreatomagmatic burst on Thursday, five days after a similar event took place that prompted the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology to raise the volcano’s alert status to Level 3.https://www.facebook.com/v2.5/plugins/post.php?app_id=&channel=https%3A%2F%2Fstaticxx.facebook.com%2Fx%2Fconnect%2Fxd_arbiter%2F%3Fversion%3D46%23cb%3Df36e7fedd459fd8%26domain%3Dnews.abs-cbn.com%26is_canvas%3Dfalse%26origin%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Fnews.abs-cbn.com%252Ff23a3dbd55163e4%26relation%3Dparent.parent&container_width=694&href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fwatch%2F%3Fv%3D359931722720227%26_rdc%3D1%26_rdr&locale=en_US&sdk=joey&width=auto

The state seismology bureau said the latest phreatomagmatic burst took place at 10:39 a.m. Thursday.

Three similar bursts were recorded on Tuesday.

The initial incident on Saturday generated plumes reaching as high as 1,500 meters, according to Phivolcs.

The same plumes, which drifted southwest, was observed during the last 24 hours as activity at the volcano’s main crater was dominated by upwelling of hot volcanic fluids in its lake, Phivolcs said in its 8 a.m. bulletin on Taal Volcano Thursday.

Under Alert Level 3, the entire Taal Volcano Island is declared as a Permanent Danger Zone, and entry there as well as high-risk barangays of Agoncillo and Laurel towns are prohibited, Phivolcs said.

These barangays that need to be evacuated are the following: Bilibinwang and Banyaga in Agoncillo; and Boso-boso, Gulod and eastern Bugaan East in Laurel.

All activities on Taal Lake should not be allowed at this time, Phivolcs added.

A total of 2,047 families or 7,237 people from 18 barangays in the province are affected by the latest unrest of Taal, the regional disaster office said in its 3 a.m. March 31, 2022 report.

Of those, 1,510 families or 5,181 individuals have sought temporary shelter in 24 evacuation centers, located in the municipalities of Agoncillo, Laurel, San Luis, Lemery, and Cuenca, since Saturday.

At present though, only 1,209 families or 4,156 people are in evacuation centers, which currently stand at 20.

In a public briefing aired Thursday, the Department of Education said that classes in 19 schools near the Taal Volcano have been suspended to ensure the safety of children amid the volcanic unrest.

Armed Forces of the Philippines Vice Chief of Staff Erickson Gloria said 968 of their personnel are ready to assist in humanitarian efforts for residents affected by Taal’s unrest.

Human Settlements and Urban Development Secretary Eduardo del Rosario, meanwhile, said there are 1,123 temporary shelters available for evacuees who may need it.

There are also evacuation centers in the municipalities of Mataas Na Kahoy, Santa Teresita, and Alitagtag, he said. 

Phivolcs officials have said it is unlikely for Taal Volcano to erupt as strong as it did in January 2020 based on latest indicators.

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