Mount Bulusan spews ash

Rhadyz B. Barcia

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Mount Bulusan spews ash
(UPDATED) Stronger explosions in Sorsogon's Mount Bulusan are possible in the coming days

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines (UPDATED) – Stronger explosions in Sorsogon’s Mount Bulusan are possible in the coming days, a government scientist said Tuesday, June 16, after successive ash explosions in the volcano.

On Tuesday, Bulusan volcano spewed at 11:02 am with clouds as high as 400 meters. The explosion, according to Phivolcs volcanologist Ed Laguerta, was bigger than the previous eruption last month.

The ashfall affected the volcano’s southwest quadrant portion, specifically the municipalities of Juban and Irosin.

Bulusan Volcano Explosion pics taken from LGU BulusanOcd-rdrrmc Bicol Vaughn Sky

Posted by Pdrrmo Sorsogon on Monday, June 15, 2015

When asked if the series of phreatic explosions is a precursor for a bigger eruption, Laguerta said that if change in the chemical composition happens, stronger volcanic activity is likely to take place.

“Should the chemical composition [of the volcano’s emissions] change, this might [indicate] a stronger volcanic activity,” Laguerta said.

Bulusan is one of the country’s most active volcanoes. Last month, the volcano exploded twice, first on May 1 and then on May 6.

Bulusan’s explosions are usually phreatic or steam-driven, which is what occurred Tuesday. The last magmatic explosion occurred 40 years ago.

The volcano is under Alert Level 1 after a series of explosions last month, due to hydrothermal abnormalities beneath the volcano.

Phivolcs warned the public and disaster officials to be on guard around the clock for more steam-driven or phreatic eruptions in the coming days.

Col. Ceasar Idio, commanding officer of the Army’s 903rd Brigade, said military trucks are on standby for possible evacuation of residents living in the slopes of restive volcano.

“My men belonging from disaster response units are on alert and ready to respond for possible evacuation of the residents living in danger zone,” Idio said.

Phivolcs warned the public not to venture within the 4-kilometer danger zone as explosions may happen anytime. –

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