President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said on Friday he was working with state agencies and local government units to ensure readiness in light of the Mayon Volcano’s increasing unrest.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) on Friday warned of possible eruptions of Mt. Mayon in Albay as it raised its alert level.
Marcos said he has been coordinating with agencies such as the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).
“After Alert Level 2 was raised over Mayon Volcano, we continued to communicate with PHIVOLCS, NDRRMC, LGUs, and other agencies to make sure that everyone is prepared for a possible change in the situation. Stay safe,” he said on Twitter.
“The Department of Science and Technology-Phivolcs is raising the alert level of Mayon Volcano from Alert Level 1 (abnormal) to Alert Level 2 (increasing unrest),” the agency’s 3 p.m. bulletin read.
“Ocular inspection of the summit during an aerial survey this morning (October 7) confirmed the presence of freshly extruded lava at the base of the summit lava dome,” it said.
Phivolcs said it placed the volcano in Albay province under Alert Level 2 due to its “current unrest driven by shallow magmatic processes that could eventually lead to phreatic eruptions or even precede hazardous magmatic eruption.”
“The event was signaled only by observations of thin remobilized light-colored ash, likely derived from lava fragmentation during the extrusion process, on the floor of the Miisi Gully since October 2, 2002,” it added.
According to Phivolcs, the second alert out of a 5-level system “means that there is current unrest driven by shallow magmatic processes that could eventually lead to phreatic eruptions or even precede hazardous magmatic eruption.”
Under Alert Level 2, the public is advised against entering the volcano’s six-kilometer-radius Permanent Danger Zone (PDZ) to minimize the risks from sudden explosions, rockfall and landslides.
Phivolcs also said Mayon “has been slightly inflated, especially in the northwest and southeast, since 2020.”
The agency noted that Mayon’s lava dome has also increased in volume by approximately 48,000 cubic meters since August 20, 2022, a day before state volcanologists raised its alert level to 1 from 0.
“In case of ash fall events that may affect communities downwind of Mayon’s crater, people should cover their nose and mouth with [a] damp, clean cloth or dust mask,” it added.
Earlier, a Phivolcs official confirmed that there was a “faint crater glow” at the Mayon Volcano, which was observable only through the telescope, GMA News reported.
Minutes after it released the bulletin on Mayon, PHILVOLCS also announced that there was an increase in activity at the Bulusan Volcano, which is located in Sorsogon, south of Albay.
However, Phivolcs said maintained the Alert Level 0 over the Bulusan Volcano, saying it is subject to change should current activity persist.
Phivolcs further advised people living within valleys and along river/stream channels especially on the southeast, southwest, and northwest sector of the edifice “to be vigilant against sediment-laden stream flows and lahars in the event of heavy and prolonged rainfall.”