'Hazardous' Mayon Volcano eruption possible within days
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) raised the alert level of the Mayon Volcano in Albay from Level 2 to Level 3, meaning a "hazardous eruption is possible within weeks or even days."
In a bulletin issued 8 pm on Sunday, January 14, Phivolcs said there have been 3 phreatic or steam-driven eruptions and 158 rockfall events between 4:21 pm of Saturday, January 13, and 7:25 pm of Sunday. These are considered signs of "relatively high unrest."
"Mayon's summit crater is now exhibiting [a] bright crater glow that signifies the growth of a new lava dome and beginnings of lava flow towards the southern slopes," Phivolcs added, explaining that magma is already at the volcano's crater.
It also said that the 6-kilometer (km) permanent danger zone around the volcano, as well as the 7-km extended danger zone, should be enforced "due to the danger of rockfalls, landslides, and sudden explosions or dome collapse that may generate hazardous volcanic flows."
At least 1,547 families or 5,857 persons have already evacuated from the municipalities of Camalig, Guinobatan, and Malilipot in Albay. Their barangays are included in the danger zone.
Phivolcs also reiterated that pilots must "avoid flying close to the volcano's summit as ash from any sudden eruption can be hazardous to aircraft."
"Based on the seasonal wind pattern, ashfall events may most likely occur on the southwest side of the volcano," added Phivolcs. – Rappler.com