Phivolcs lowers Taal status to Alert Level 2
MANILA, Philippines — State volcanologists have lowered the status of Taal Volcano to Alert Level 2 on Friday, which signaled “decreased unrest,” over a month after the country’s second most active volcano suddenly rocked to life and sent thousands of residents fleeing from their homes.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), however, stressed that the lower alert level does not mean that the unrest has stopped, or that the possibility of an eruption has already disappeared.
Because of these threats, Phivolcs has recommended that entry into the Taal Volcano Island, locally known as “pulo,” must be strictly prohibited.
Under Alert Level 2, the whole Volcano Island remains a danger zone, Phivolcs director Renato Solidum told the Inquirer. Despite being declared a permanent danger zone, thousands live on the Volcano Island itself. Since Phivolcs lowered the alert level of Taal to 3 from 4 on Jan. 26, volcanologists observed lesser and weaker activity from the volcano in the succeeding three weeks.
Volcanic earthquakes recorded by the Taal Volcano Network averaged 141 events each day, fewer than the earlier weeks of unrest, where quakes numbered to as many as 420 every day.
The number and energy of tremor and low-frequency events, which is associated with the activity of the shallow magma, has also diminished, Phivolcs said.
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