Recently there has been a significant drop in the emission of sulfur dioxide and fewer volcanic earthquakes in Taal Volcano, PHIVOLCS said on Tuesday.
Advertisement The volcano sulfur dioxide has fallen to an average of 344 tons/day compared to the 4,353 tonnes/day recorded on Monday.
PHIVOLCS has previously explained that the presence of more atmospheric sulfur dioxide means that the magma is shallow or moving closer to the surface.
Since it was initially estimated at 5,299 tons/day on January 13, a day after its eruption, Taal’s sulfur dioxide emission has fluctuated, but the latest figure is the lowest recorded so far.
Meanwhile, only five volcanic earthquakes from 5 a.m. were plotted by the Philippine Seismic Network (PSN). Monday before 5 a.m. Monday. These were recorded with no felt event at magnitudes 1.6 to 2.5.
Given these changes, on Tuesday Alert Level 4 was still raised over Taal Volcano, indicating a dangerous eruption within hours to days is still likely.
According to PHIVOLCS, the activity of Taal Volcano in the past 24 hours has been characterized by “weak steam emissions that generated 500-600 meter tall ash feathers” that dispersed ash to the southwest areas of the main crater.
Citing PAGASA’s wind forecast, the institute said that ashfall may affect the municipalities south, southwest, west and northwest of Taal Volcano if the eruption plume remains below three kilometers.
Volcanic ash can enter Cavite and western Laguna if the plume of the eruption rises from three to five kilometers.
In the meantime, if a major eruption occurs and an eruption column is produced over five kilometers, ash can be pushed through Metro Manila, parts of the provinces of Laguna, Rizal, Marinduque, and Quezon.
PHIVOLCS emphasized the need to evacuate the Taal Volcano Island, areas within the 14-kilometer radius from the main crater and areas along the Pansipit River Valley due to risks such as base surge and volcanic tsunami if the predicted dangerous eruption occurs.
Due to the airborne ash and ballistic fragments from the eruption column, the airspace around Taal Volcano remains dangerous for aircraft, it said.
The death toll among Taal evacuees has risen to four as of Monday.
President Rodrigo Duterte said on Monday that he would ask Congress to pass a P30 billion supplementary budget to increase the funds needed to help areas affected by the Taal Volcano eruption.
Tuesday, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said the number of people affected by the eruption of the Taal Volcano has reached 271,278 or 68,439 families.
Of these numbers, 38,906 families or 148,514 people are taking temporary shelter in 497 evacuation centers.