By MB Online
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) lowered Taal Volcano’s alert status to alert level 2 on Friday.
According to Phivolcs, alert level 2 means “decreased unrest” but the threat of an eruption has not disappeared.
“Alert level 2 means that there is decreased unrest but should not be interpreted that unrest has ceased or that the threat of an eruption has disappeared,” Philvolcs said.
“Should an uptrend or pronounced change in monitored parameters forewarn a potential eruption, the Alert Level may be raised back to Alert Level 3.
But, “should there be a persistent downtrend in monitored parameters after a sufficient observation period, the Alert Level will be further lowered to Alert Level 1,” it added.
After Philvolcs downgrades Taal Volcano’s alert status to level 3 last Jan. 26, the condition of Taal has been characterized by the “generation of weak steam-laden plumes, consistent with decreased magmatic unrest.”
In the past two weeks, Phivolcs said that the number of volcanic earthquakes recorded by the Taal Volcano Network (TVN) was 141 events per day on average, while the number of significant events recorded by the Philippine Seismic Network across the Taal region declined to 127 events of magnitudes M1.4 to M4.3.
It is advised that people residing within at high risk to base surges must be prepared for a “quick and organized evacuation.”
Philvolcs noted that sudden steam-driven or phreatic explosions, volcanic earthquakes, ashfall, and expulsions of volcanic gas can still occur within TVI and along its coast.
“Phivolcs recommends that entry into TVI, Taal’s Permanent Danger Zone must be strictly prohibited,” it added.