LOOK: Mayon Volcano 'crater glow' as it stays under Alert Level 2
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) gave the public a glimpse of what it called the "crater glow" of Mayon Volcano in the province of Albay.
Phivolcs posted the photos on its Facebook page on Wednesday, February 5, saying that these were taken on Tuesday evening, February 4, from the Mayon Volcano Observatory in Ligñon Hill, Legazpi City.
"In the past two days, crater glow has been detected at the summit crater that is likely caused by hot magmatic gases heating the overlying atmosphere," Phivolcs said on Wednesday.
"This suggests the possibility that remnant magma may be quietly rising to the shallow levels of the edifice," it added, referring to magma from the volcano's 2018 eruption.
Phivolcs reminded the public that Mayon has been under Alert Level 2 since March 29, 2018, which means a "moderate level of unrest."
"Since the end of magmatic eruption in March 2018, Mayon Volcano has exhibited declining earthquake activity and SO2 (sulfur dioxide) emission. However, a slight swelling or inflation of the edifice began in February 2019," Phivolcs recounted.
"These observations," added Phivolcs, "indicate that Mayon's recent behavior has been mainly driven by changes occurring within magma" that was already present, instead of fresh magma moving toward the surface.
Phivolcs reiterated its recommendation that entry of people be strictly prohibited within:
- the 6-kilometer-radius Permanent Danger Zone
- the precautionary 7-kilometer-radius Extended Danger Zone, stretching from Anoling, Camalig to Sta Misericordia, Sto Domingo
"The public is reminded that sudden explosions, lava collapse, pyroclastic density currents or PDCs, and ashfall can occur without warning and threaten areas in the upper to middle slopes of Mayon," Phivolcs said.
"People residing close to these danger areas are also advised to observe precautions against rockfalls, PDCs, and ashfall."
Lahar-prone areas near the volcano should be avoided as well, especially during heavy rain, added Phivolcs. (READ: What other LGUs can learn from Albay's Mayon response plan)
Aircraft are advised to avoid flying close to Mayon's summit, too.
Phivolcs regularly monitors all active volcanoes in the Philippines. The one that has made headlines for nearly a month now is Taal Volcano in the province of Batangas, which started erupting on January 12 and is currently at Alert Level 3. – Rappler.com