Phivolcs: 'Crater glow' observed in Mayon but Alert Level 2 is still in effect
File photo shows Mayon Volcano in Albay. Phivolcs said Wednesday that "crater glow" has been observed in the volcano, which suggests that "remnant magma" may be rising to the shallow levels.
The STAR/Edd Gumban, File

Phivolcs: 'Crater glow' observed in Mayon but Alert Level 2 is still in effect

Gaea Katreena Cabico (Philstar.com) - February 5, 2020 - 6:40pm

MANILA, Philippines — State volcanologists said a “crater glow” has been observed at Mayon Volcano in Albay in the past two days, indicating there may be upward movement of “remnant magma” from its last eruption.

Alert Level 2 is still in effect over Mayon, which means the volcano remains at a “moderate level of unrest.”

“In the past two days, crater glow has been detected at the summit crater that is likely caused by hot magmatic gases heating the overlying atmosphere,” Phivolcs said in an advisory.

It added: “This suggests the possibility that remnant magma may be quietly rising to the shallow levels of the edifice.”

Mayon—renowned for its “perfect cone”—last erupted in 2018. Since then, the volcano had declining earthquake activity and sulfur dioxide emission.

But a “slight swelling or inflation of the edifice” has been observed since the beginning of February 2019, state volcanologists said.

Phivolcs stressed that Mayon's recent behavior was mainly driven by “changes occurring within magma already replaced beneath the edifice rather than by renewed magma intrusion events.”

The agency recommended that entry into the six kilometer radius Permanent Danger Zone and a precautionary seven kilometer radius Extended Danger Zone from Anoling, Camalig to Sta. Misericordia, Sto. Domingo be prohibited.

“The public is reminded that sudden explosions, lava collapse, pyroclastic density currents or PDCs and ashfall can occur without warning and threaten areas in the upper to middle slopes of Mayon. People residing close to these danger areas are also advised to observe precautions against rockfalls, PDCs and ashfall,” it said.

Last week, Phivolcs lowered Taal Volcano in Batangas to Alert Level 3, two weeks after its stream-driven eruption. Ashfall unleashed by Taal covered and destroyed houses and establishment in Batangas and Cavite, displacing thousands of residents. 

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