Mercury Drug runs out of face masks as Taal eruption wreaks ashfall
MANILA, Philippines — Mercury Drug has run out of face masks as demand skyrocketed after Taal Volcano belched ash and steam on Sunday.
“Due to the influx of demand on face masks, we temporarily ran out of stock,” Mercury Drug said in a statement on Monday, adding it was coordinating with suppliers to replenish its stock of the item.
Areas affected by the Taal Volcano’s phreatic eruption will be prioritized in their distribution of supply, it added.
The firm also assured that it will not “hoard” face masks and “prices will definitely not increase.”
Please be informed Suki! #ParaSaYoSuki #TaalVolcano
On Sunday afternoon, Taal Volcano spewed steam, ash, and small rocks. This prompted the government to order the evacuation of residents in nearby villages and ask tourists to leave Tagaytay, Batangas and Cavite areas as a precaution for an imminent eruption.
Early Monday, Taal Volcano had a magmatic eruption, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said.
Phivolcs placed Taal Volcano on Alert Level 4 since Sunday night. This means that a hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours or days.
Health experts advised the public to wear N95 masks as protection against volcanic ashfall.
N95 is a rating of protective masks by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. This means that the mask protects against 95 percent of airborne particles but not resistant to oil fumes.
It is also one of the easiest respirator masks to find in the country.
Edited by KGA
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