A total of 185 volcanic earthquakes were recorded at Taal Volcano in the past 24 hours, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said at 8 am on Monday, July 12.
In a bulletin, Phivolcs said these earthquakes included 7 low-frequency volcanic earthquakes and 176 volcanic tremor events lasting 1 to 16 minutes.
The total figure reported on Monday morning is more than double the 74 reported on Sunday morning, July 11.
In addition, sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission remains high, averaging at 6,421 tons per day on Sunday.
The current all-time high for SO2 emission is 22,628 tons per day, recorded on July 4.
A volcano emits SO2 when magma is relatively close to the surface.
Phivolcs added on Monday that steam-rich plumes rose 1,500 meters or 1.5 kilometers from Taal Volcano’s main crater, before drifting southwest and west-northwest.
Phivolcs reiterated that an explosive eruption is possible.
If that happens, there may be pyroclastic density currents, which are clouds of hot gas, ash, and other volcanic debris. A volcanic tsunami is also possible since Taal Volcano is situated within Taal Lake.
Taal Volcano Island, Taal Lake, the barangays of Bilibinwang and Banyaga in Agoncillo town, and the barangays of Buso-buso, Gulod, and Bugaan East in Laurel town remain high-risk areas.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said on Sunday that there are 4,977 people inside evacuation centers and 8,910 staying outside evacuation centers, for a total of 13,887 displaced individuals. – Rappler.com