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PHIVOLCS confirms Mount Pinatubo phreatic eruption

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) on Tuesday confirmed that a phreatic eruption occurred at Mount Pinatubo this afternoon.

It earlier said there were reports of seismic and infrasound signals of a weak explosion at the volcano. 

"Based on visual reports of an eruption plume and seismic, infrasound and satellite detection, DOST-PHIVOLCS confirms that a phreatic eruption occurred at Pinatubo Crater between 12:09 and 12:13PM," said PHIVOLCS in its latest update on the volcano.



PHIVOLCS also confirmed in its recent advisory that the phreatic eruption happened after the Philippine military's activities, which means it has no relation to the condition of the volcano.

"The event was also confirmed to have occurred after ordnance disposal activities by the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines), which has no relation to the condition of the volcano, on the northern flanks of Pinatubo conducted prior noon today," it said.

However, PHIVOLCS said there are still no reports of ashfall from communities near the area.

"So far, there [have] been no reports of ashfall from communities of Zambales over which the eruption plume dispersed," it said.

"Considering that there has been very low seismic activity in the volcano in the past days and low diffuse volcanic CO2 flux measured at Pinatubo Crater Lake, and high infrasound over seismic energy released by the eruption, the event was likely driven by shallow hydrothermal processes beneath the edifice," state seismologists further pointed out.

PHIVOLCS also reiterated its calls to stop traveling within the vicinity of Mount Pinatubo.

It likewise advised local government units to prohibit entry into Pinatubo Crater  "as shallow phreatic or hydrothermal explosions may occur again without warning."

PHIVOLCS also advised communities and LGUs surrounding the volcano to prepare for possible earthquake and volcanic hazards. — Consuelo Marquez/BM, GMA News