Monday, May 30, 2011

Phivolcs: 115 quakes recorded at Taal in Past 24 Hours, Philippines - 30th May 2011

State volcanogists noted a "remarkable increase" in seismic activity at Taal Volcano in Batangas, recording 115 volcanic quakes in the last 24 hours.

Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology director Renato Solidum Jr. said some of the volcanic quakes were felt between Intensity I and IV.

"Ang ibig sabihin ang bulkan ay abnormal... Posibleng ito ay dahilan ng pag-adjust ng bulkan habang paakyat ang magma (It means activity at the volcano is abnormal. It means the volcano is likely adjusting as magma continues to make its way up)," Solidum said in an interview on dzBB radio.

However, he said they could not yet tell at this time if this will lead to an eruption.

Solidum also said there is no indication for now that would prompt Phivolcs to raise the alert level to "3."

"Akala ng mga residente ng Taal Volcano Island walang nangyayari sa volcano, maraming abnormality ang ating nakikita sa iba't ibang parametro (So residents at Volcano Island who think nothing is happening at the volcano anymore should think again. There are still many abnormalities at the volcano)," he added in a separate interview on dwIZ radio.

Phivolcs' Monday update said that of the 115 volcanic quakes, 12 were felt between Intensity I and IV at Pira-piraso, Alas-as and Calauit located at northeast, southwest and southeast sectors of Volcano Island, respectively.

One of these events at 8:32 p.m. Sunday was felt at Intensity I while nine quakes between 1:02 a.m. and 3:26 a.m. Monday were felt at Intensity II.

Phivolcs added one event at 1:26 a.m. Monday was felt at Intensity III, while one at 1:05 a.m. Monday was felt at Intensity IV.

"All of these felt events were reportedly accompanied by rumbling sounds," Phivolcs said.

Phivolcs also said Alert Level 2 remains over Taal Volcano, meaning magma has been intruding towards the surface.

It reminded the public the Main Crater, Daang Kastila Trail and Mt. Tabaro are strictly off-limits because sudden hazardous steam-driven explosions may occur and high concentrations of toxic gases may accumulate.

Also, it said the entire Volcano Island is a Permanent Danger Zone (PDZ), and permanent settlement in the island is strictly not recommended. Source