GMA News Online

Report: Text rumor prompts 50 families near Taal to flee

June 15, 2010 2:06pm

Tags: Phivolcs
A nasty text rumor prompted at least 50 families living near restive Taal Volcano in Batangas province to flee their homes Monday night.

Radio dzXL reported the 50 families left their homes in Pulo Island and went to Talisay town, where they sought help from Coast Guard personnel there.

The report quoted the families as saying they fled after receiving text messages indicating Taal had "erupted."

But the Coast Guard in the province assured the families their fears of the volcano erupting were baseless, at least for now.

Meanwhile, GMANews' Balitanghali reported the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) is denying rumors the volcano is erupting.

Phivolcs' science research specialist Ted Sandoval told Balitanghali's Julius Segovia that rumors of eruption Monday night was a false alarm, adding that residents in the area must verify any information they get regarding the volcano's activity.

According to Sandoval, residents should coordinate with Phivolcs through this hotline: 0437730293.

Although Phivolcs recorded 23 volcanic tremors Monday and seven on Tuesday, reduced number of quakes doesn't mean the volcano's activity is subsiding, Sandoval said.

The agency has recorded that the ground surrounding the volcano has risen by two millimeters, indicating the possibility of heightened activity.

Phivolcs had raised the alert level of Taal to "2" after recording increased volcanic activity there.

For its part, the Coast Guard is implementing an order to disallow tourists from getting near the volcano island, adding classes of two schools in the area are still under indefinite suspension. - LBG, RJAB Jr., GMANews.TV
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Tags: Phivolcs

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