Mayon Volcano's alert status raised to level 2

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Mayon Volcano's alert status raised to level 2
This undated file photo shows Mayon Volcano in Albay.
The STAR / Edd Gumban, File

MANILA, Philippines — State volcanologists raised Friday the status of Mayon Volcano in Albay to Alert Level 2, saying it has been exhibiting “increasing unrest.”

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said the raising of the alert level means “there is current unrest driven by shallow magmatic processes that could eventually lead to phreatic eruptions or even precede hazardous magmatic eruption.”

Phreatic eruptions are steam-driven explosions. In magmatic eruptions, lava or tephra is ejected from a magma source within the earth.

What to do?

Phivolcs advised the public to be vigilant and refrain from entering the six kilometer-radius Permanent Danger Zone to minimize the risks from sudden explosions, rock fall, and landslides.

“In case of ash fall events that may affect communities downwind of Mayon’s crater, people should cover their nose with damp, clean cloth or dust mask,” it said.

Pilots are also advised to avoid flying close to the summit as ash from any sudden eruption can be hazardous to aircraft.

What happened?

According to Phivolcs, inspection of the summit crater conducted Friday morning confirmed the presence of freshly extruded lava at the base of the summit lava dome.

“The event was signaled only by observation of thin remobilized light-colored ash, likely derived from lava fragmentation during the extrusion process, on the floor of the Miisi Gully since 2 October 2022,” it said.

The institute added that short-term ground deformation data relative to August 2022 yielded short-term deflation on the southeastern Mayon edifice, and only slight, short-term inflation on the general western to southwestern flanks.

The status of Mayon Volcano was raised to Alert Level 1 on August 21 as it “entered a period of unrest.”



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