Filtered By: Topstories

Taal spews thick steam anew; number of quakes rises


Restive Taal Volcano spewed a tall column of thick, white steam early Friday morning, signifying that the heating up of volcanic materials underneath the crater has intensified.

A report on Unang Hirit by Jonathan Andal quoted Taal Volcano's resident volcanologist Paulo Reniva as saying that the thick steam bursting up from the crater meant that excessively hot volcanic materials are moving up, causing the water to boil.

Also, Reniva said the steam observed at 6 a.m. on Thursday was low, less dense compared to the steaming activity this Friday morning, which is far more dense and high.

On the other hand, Andal reported that the number of volcanic quakes has also increased to 466 as of Friday morning, from 444 last Thursday. But none of these quakes were felt, except by instruments.

However, experts from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) said that the high frequency of volcanic quakes indicates that magma is still moving up.

PHIVOLCS early Friday's Taal bulletin indicates that in the last 24 hours, the main crater has been characterized by "weak to moderate emission of white steam-laden plumes 50 to 500 meters high."

Also, Sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission has increased from 144 tons per day on Thursday to an average of 224 tons/day this Friday.

Alert Level 4 still remains in effect over Taal Volcano, PHIVOLCS said, adding that a hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours to days.

It reiterates that total evacuation of the Taal Volcano Island, and high-risk areas as identified in the hazard maps within the 14-km radius from the main crater and along the Pansipit River Valley where fissuring has been observed is still in effect.—LBG/KBK, GMA News