Alert level 2 still hoisted over Taal

(Eagle News)–An alert level 2 remains hoisted over Taal, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said.

PHIVOLCS said activity in the main crater in the past 24 hours has been characterized by weak emission of steam-laden plumes rising 200 to 300 meters high.

Sulfur dioxide emission was measured at an average of 53 tons per day on February 15.

PHIVOLCS said the Taal Volcano Network recorded 69 volcanic earthquakes “that are associated (with) rock fracturing processes beneath and around the edifice.”

PHIVOLCS reminded the public that “sudden steam-driven or phreatic explosions, volcanic earthquakes, ashfall and lethal accumulations or expulsions of volcanic gas can occur and threaten areas within Taal Volcano Island (TVI) and along its coast.”

It also recommended that  entry into (the island) and Taal’s Permanent Danger Zone be strictly prohibited.

Local government units were advised to  assess previously evacuated areas within the seven-kilometer radius for “damages and road accessibilities and to strengthen preparedness, contingency and communication measures in case of renewed unrest.”

Civil aviation authorities must advise pilots to avoid flying close to the volcano, PHIVOLCS said.