Danger remains as volcanic activities increase in Taal

Marje Pelayo   •   January 20, 2020   •   794

Aerial photos Taal Volcano eruption aftermath epa08135676 Handout aerial photo provided by the Office of Civil Defense shows the Taal Volcano crater in Batangas province, south of Manila, Philippines, 17 January 2020. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) has kept the alert level at four, following the volcano’s eruption on 12 January 2020. EPA-EFE/OFFICE OF CIVIL DEFENSE HANDOUT HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES

MANILA, Philippines – Over a week since Taal Volcano began its eruptive activity, danger still remains according to experts.

In fact, a total of 787 earthquakes have been recorded in the volcano island on Saturday (January 18) alone, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS).

This frequency of ground shaking is double the number of all volcanic earthquakes recorded in the previous six days of Taal’s volcanic activity.

Over the weekend, more than 200 tremors were recorded within the range of magnitude 1.2 and 4.1, the PHIVOLCS said and on Sunday evening (January 19), the strongest shaking – magnitude 4.2 earthquake – was felt in Mabini, Batangas.

The volcano institute have also observed that Taal is producing about one-kilometer high white ash pillar and sulfur dioxide of around 1,442 tons each day.

Because of these observations, PHIVOLCS cannot just lift or downgrade Alert Level 4 that is currently in effect around the volcano island because the possibility of a massive explosive eruption remains high within hours or days.

Thus, PHIVOLCS strongly appeals for understanding and more patience from residents and reminds them not to return yet to their villages especially those within the 14-km danger zone.

Volcanic earthquakes recorded in Taal:

  • January 19 – 787
  • January 18 – 366
  • January 17 – 65
  • January 16 – 103
  • January 15 – 159
  • January 14 – 49
  • January 13 – 52

Source: PHIVOLCS

2 nabbed for allegedly pouring chemical into river in Batangas that caused huge foam

Robie de Guzman   •   August 20, 2020

Police on Thursday arrested two individuals in Tuy, Batangas for allegedly throwing chemical wastes into a river that caused a huge foam to appear in Barangays Sabang and Bayudbud.

Local authorities identified the suspects as Romano Cabrera, 46, and Mark Anthony Austria, 38. Both are residents of Tuy town.

Police said the two were apprehended following complaints from residents about a foul smell in the area in the afternoon of August 19.

When they proceeded to the area to verify the information, police allegedly found the two suspects cleaning 16 drums on the river’s shore.

Police said appropriate charges will be filed against them.

The local government of Tuy and the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office, meanwhile, said an investigation into the effects of the chemicals is underway. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Aris Silvestre)

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No casualty in MV Moreta fire off Marikaban Island, Batangas — PCG

Marje Pelayo   •   July 20, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) immediately dispatched BRP Boracay to help in the fire incident involving a Philippine-registered cargo vessel, MV Moreta Venture southwest off Marikaban Island in Batangas  around 4:53 a.m. Monday (July 20).

Commodore Leovigildo Panopio of the PCG-Southern Tagalog reported that there was no casualty in the incident.

The fire was immediately contained and declared fire out at around 8:00 a.m.

BRP Boracay (FPB-2401) was berthed in Sta. Clara, Batangas City when the PCG Command Center received a distress call from said cargo vessel.

Said cargo vessel, which is now dead on the water and drifting, will be towed to the nearest port for safety. 

The PCG is now coordinating with the nearest tugboat in the vicinity waters for assistance.

Lahar flows inundate houses in Batangas

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 8, 2020

Residents of Barangay Buso-Buso, Laurel, and Barangay Banyaga in Agoncillo, Batangas were seen sweeping mud from their houses after lahar brought by heavy rainfall flowed into their homes on Sunday (June 7).

Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Chairman of Barangay Buso-Buso Cyrus Mendoza reported that no one was hurt during the incident and residents have already begun a bayanihan to clean their barangay.

“Habang bumubuhos po ang malakas na ulan ay nakita po namin ang lahar flow na nanggaling sa mga kabundukan sa amin. Pinuntahan po namin ang mga bahay na pinasukan po lahar na ito (While the rain was pouring heavily, we saw the lahar flow from our mountains. We have already visited the houses affected by the lahar flow),” he said.

Both barangays Banyaga and Buso-Buso are in the 7-kilometer danger zone of Taal Volcano.

The lahar came from the ashes brought by the Taal eruption in January. –AAC (with reports from Aris Silvestre)

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