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NDRRMC on alert for imminent Mt. Mayon explosion

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

Around 5,000 families have already evacuated areas within the seven kilometer radius of Mayon Volcano.

Families from 25 barangays in Albay are now in 18 evacuation centers.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said they continue to be on alert for any Mayon Volcano activities.

“So, we are still on alert level 3 and very closely, Phivolcs is monitoring Mayon’s volcanic activity,” NDRRMC Spokesperson Mina Marasigan said.

The NDRRMC has also coordinated with the local government units and the Department of Social Welfare and Development to ensure that relief supplies and stand-by funds are ready for the evacuees.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is also on stand-by for the security and peace and order.

The government will also install temporary learning centers for the students in the evacuation centers.

Although tight security is imposed in the area, tourists were not restricted in watching the activities in Mayon Volcano.

“We have designated viewing desks and areas where tourists are allowed to go,” Marasigan said. – Rey Pelayo | UNTV News & Rescue

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Albay tourism thrives anew

by UNTV   |   Posted on Monday, February 19th, 2018

Legazpi, ALBAY — Even before the recent activities of Mt. Mayon, the volcano has been drawing attention from tourists.

Aside from its perfect cone shape that is seen in the morning, the nighttime fireworks display of the lava being spewed by the volcano is a sight to behold.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) Region 5 said the Albay tourism industry is thriving once again, particularly in Legazpi City, as it registered a ten percent increase in visitor arrivals since January.

“Marami talaga nag-bucket list ng Mayon Volcano to see, so we expect na mas dadami talaga ngayon ang curiosity (Many have included Mayon Volcano in their bucket list. So we expect curiosity over it to increase),” said DOT Region 5 director Benjamin Santiago.

Also pulling in visitors is the Cagsawa Ruins, a historical site of Barangay Cagsawa where more than 1,000 residents were buried alive when Mayon spewed lahar in 1814.

Tourists also flock to Lignon Hills where Mt. Mayon can be seen at close range.

Lignon Hills also offers many activities for tourists, such as the sky bike, where Mayon’s beauty can be seen in all its grandeur.

The Embarkadero de Legazpi, on the other hand, gives a full view of the volcano’s perfect cone shape from afar.

Tourists are always in awe of all of these beautiful attractions.

“Beautiful and amazing,” said Kim Tehyung, a Korean tourist.

“The mountain is so high the clouds are around there its good place to make a photo,” said Oh Yong Kun, one of the Korean tourists.

The DOT is confident that once the alert level warning in Albay is lowered, this will pave the way for other destination attractions to actively operate once again and will lead to a more a spiked up tourism industry. — Mon Jocson | UNTV News & Rescue

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Employees and students join 2018’s first earthquake drill

by UNTV   |   Posted on Thursday, February 15th, 2018

MANILA, Philippines — Quezon City hosted the drill this year which primarily focused on preparations for the possible striking of a magnitude 7.2 earthquake or the so-called “The Big One” in Metro Manila.

Upon the sounding of the siren, participants did the “duck, cover and hold” during the 1st quarter nationwide simultaneous earthquake drill held at the Quezon City Memorial Circle on Thursday.

This drill is still part of the yearly preparation, led by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

Various government agencies showcased their preparedness in addressing the needs of the affected populace and in evacuating possible victims.

There was a scenario of fire, airlifting of victims through a chopper and rescuing of victims trapped inside collapsed structures.

According to Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, the public should not ignore the threat of a powerful earthquake.

“Pakiusap lang, let us take this seriously. ‘Wag nating balewalain. Ito ang mangangahulugan kung tayo ay ligtas o kung tayo ay patay (Please, let us take this seriously. Let’s not ignore this. It could mean our survival or our demise),” said the official.

Interior Secretary Officer in Charge Eduardo Año also underscores the importance of conducting regular disaster drills.

“We cannot stop natural disasters but we can arm ourselves with knowledge. Many lives wouldn’t have to be lost if there is enough disaster preparedness,” said DILG OIC Usec. Eduardo Año

The government fears the big one will strike when the west valley fault moves.

Based on an initial study, a magnitude 7.4 earthquake might cause more than 35,000 casualties, over 100,000 injuries and may destroy more than 170,000 buildings. — Lea Ylagan | UNTV News & Rescue

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Mt. Mayon spews white smoke, signals calming of the volcano – PHIVOLCS

by UNTV   |   Posted on Thursday, February 15th, 2018

White smoke coming out of the Mayon volcano on the morning of February 15, 2018. (UNTV Drone Journalism)

ALBAY, Philippines  — Today is the 32nd day since Mayon Volcano began erupting.

According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), Mt. Mayon has already spewed 82 million cubic meters of lava, the biggest volume since 1960.

Although it is not discounting the possibility of a huge eruption, PHIVOLCS said Mayon Volcano is slowly calming down.

PHIVOLCS based this information on the white smoke coming from the crater of Mt. Mayon.

The agency said the smoke billowing from the crater of Mt. Mayon is sulfur dioxide. As long as it continues to spew smoke, this means that nothing is blocking the magma, and thus, helps the lava to continuously flow. This PHIVOLCS said that is a sign that the volcano is beginning to calm down.

“Kung biglang bumagsak yung sulfur dioxide ibig sabihin blocked yung crater hindi makalabas yung gas it means nag build up siya ng pressure,” said PHIVOLCS Region 5 Spokesperson Paul Alanis

(If the sulfur dioxide stops coming out, this means the crater is blocked. The gas cannot go out, and it builds up pressure within.)

But the agency noted it’s not a sufficient basis to lower the alert level for Mayon Volcano.

In the past 24 hours, the agency recorded several episodes of lava fountaining that lasted for up to 20 minutes.

The lava flow reaches up to 4.5 km from the crater of the volcano.

More than 100 volcanic earthquakes, on the other hand, have already caused a series of rock falls.

The volcano is also continues to swell.

“Hindi po namin maibababa dahil again lahat ng parameters is matataas pa rin,” said the spokesperson.

(We could not lower it because again all the parameters remain high.)

PHIVOLCS is yet to determine the amount of lava that the volcano still has to release or when the eruption will end.

But with the white smoke it emits, the agency believes the threat of a possible massive eruption has already lessened.  — Mon Jocson | UNTV News & Rescue

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