Despite ‘lull’, Taal’s fiery explosion is still likely – Phivolcs

/ 02:23 PM January 16, 2020
Despite ‘lull’, Taal’s fiery explosion is still likely – Phivolcs

People watch plumes of smoke and ash rise from as Taal Volcano erupts on Sunday, January 12, 2020, in Tagaytay, Cavite province, outside Manila, Philippines (Photo by AARON FAVILA / AP)

MANILA, Philippines — Amid reports of Taal-affected evacuees attempting to return home, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) warned that peril remains in the second-most active volcano in the country.

“Nakatalaga pa din po ang Alert Level 4 (Alert Level 4 is still in effect),” Ma. Antonia Bornas, chief of Phivolcs’ Volcano Monitoring and Eruption Prediction Division, said in a press conference Thursday.


“Nandyan pa din po ‘yung posibilidad na magkaroon po ng biglaang pagsabog ng malakas ng main crater ng Taal.”

(The possibility of a sudden explosive eruption of Taal’s main crater is still there.)


Bornas said that with Taal’s ongoing unrest, a major threat that remains is the occurrence of a bay surge.

According to her, a bay surge will occur once a powerful blast from the volcano causes a high eruption column. This column will then collapse due to the significant amount of ash being spewed.

She added that this phenomenon happens at subsonic speed, meaning those still near the Island would have no time to escape.

Evacuation a ‘political decision’

Phivolcs said that once a volcano is raised to Alert Level 1, they automatically give a “scientifically informed advice” to the concerned local government regarding evacuation.

“Hindi po natin sila pwedeng sabihan na hindi tama ginagawa niyo,” Bornas said, referring to local government units. “It’s not within our authority, our sphere of experience.”

(We cannot tell them that what they’re doing is wrong.)

According to her, the reason local governments have the arduous task of implementing evacuation is because there are other things to consider besides science, such as the needs of constituents and economic factors.


With this, Bornas called evacuation “a political decision.”

Furthermore, she stressed that Phivolcs remains firm on their advice to evacuate the Taal Volcano Island and high-risk areas within the 14-kilometer radius danger zone.

TINGNAN: Mapa ng mga panganib ng bulkang Taal.Para makita ng mas malinaw, bisitahin at i-download ang mga hazard maps…

Posted by Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS-DOST) on Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Bornas also said the growing impatience of some evacuees is understandable given the volcano’s prolonged activity and periods of lull. However, she asked for more patience.

“Bigyan po natin ng pagkakataon ang atin pong ahensya na pag-aralan ulit ng masusi kung ano pong ibig sabihin ng lull na ito,” she said.

(Please give our agency time to further study what this lull means.)

READ: Phivolcs to use satellite imagery from USGS, NASA to evaluate Taal

Edited by KGA


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Inquirer calls for support for the victims of Taal volcano eruption
Responding to appeals for help, the Inquirer is extending its relief to the families affected by the recent eruption of Taal volcano.
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TAGS: DepEd, disaster, Education, Local news, Ma. Antonia Bornas, Nation, national news, news, Philippine news updates, Phivolcs, Taal, Taal eruption, Taal Volcano
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