Negros Occidental updates preps as Mt Kanlaon remains on Alert Level 2
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – The Negros Occidental provincial government on Friday, July 13, updated its contingency plans as Mount Kanlaon remained on Alert Level 2.
Alert Level 2 means that the active volcano, which straddles the provinces of Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental, is undergoing a moderate level of unrest.
Safety officers from various sectors in the province gathered Friday, July 13, to intensify their capabilities in terms of disaster risk reduction.
Zeaphard Gerhart Caelian, head of the Negros Occidental Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Division, said there is no cause for alarm yet, but he stressed that localities should be ready for the "worst case scenario" or if Kanlaon erupts.
“We have to pray that [volcanic activities in] Kanlaon will not escalate, but we have to prepare. This is an active volcano, and the ring of fire is very active,” Caelian said.
If Mount Kanlaon reaches Alert Level 3, Caelian said they should follow a provincial approach as half of the province will be affected.
Alert Level 3 will affect 14 villages in 5 local government units (LGUs) – Bago City, La Castellana, La Carlota, San Carlos, and Murcia.
In terms of barangays under the danger zones, there are 5 in La Castellana, 4 in La Carlota, 3 in Bago, and one each in San Carlos and Murcia.
The provincial government has identified 22,251 households, or 99,025 individuals, who will be affected by an eruption.
There are 9 affected localities that fall under this scenario – 8 in Negros Occidental and one in Negros Oriental.
For the province, these are Bago, La Castellana, La Carlota, San Carlos, Murcia, Moises Padilla, San Enrique and Pontevedra; and Canlaon City in Negros Oriental
Under its operational strategy for Mount Kanlaon, the provincial government has categorized the LGUs in terms of the degree of exposure to danger, from directly affected to less affected – Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, and Delta.
For LGUs that are directly affected (Alpha), the potential hazards include seismic earthquake, ash fall, lava, pyroclastic, and lahar, with critical areas like La Castellana, Bago, La Carlota, Murcia, and San Carlos.
Potential hazards in the Bravo category are the seismic quake, ash fall, and lahar, with critical areas such as Moises Padilla, Valladolid, San Enrique, Pontevedra, Isabela, Binalbagan, Hinigaran, Pulupandan and Salvador Benedicto.
Localities like Bacolod, Calatrava, Talisay, Kabankalan, Himamaylan, Silay, Ilog and Cadiz were categorized under Charlie, or the LGUs that may or may not be affected by the ash fall, while under Delta, or unaffected LGUs, are Escalante, Toboso, Sagay City, Manapla, Victorias, E.B. Magalona, Cauayan, Candoni, Sipalay City, and Hinoba-an.
The report underscored the critical actions to be done before, during and after the volcanic eruption, with emphasis on coordination and support management. – Rappler.com