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Phivolcs warns locals near Taal Volcano to stay indoors

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) is monitoring the continuing activities behind of Taal Volcano as it remains under Alert Level 1.

“A total of 5,831 tonnes per day of volcanic sulfur dioxide or SO2 gas emission from the Taal Main Crater was recorded last 1 June, which was higher than last month’s average of 3,556 tonnes per day,” Phivolcs reported.

State volcanologists also said on Sunday that there is an increased degassing activity in the form of “voluminous steam-rich plumes that rose to 3,000 meters above Taal Volcano Island”. It also produced significant volcanic smog or “vog” over Taal Caldera in the municipalities of Balete, Laurel, and Agoncillo, Batangas.

The vog can irritate the eyes, throat, and respiratory tract with severity depending on the gas concentrations and durations of exposure.

Acid rain is also a likely scenario due to the presence of the vog.

“During periods of rainfall and volcanic gas emission over areas where the plume disperses” and may cause damage to crops, houses, and buildings,” the agency  said.

“Avoid outdoor activities, stay indoors, and shut doors and windows to block out vog. Cover your nose, ideally with an N95 facemask. Drink plenty of water to reduce throat irritation or constriction. Watch over yourself and seek help from a doctor or the barangay health unit if needed, especially If serious effects are experienced,” Phivolcs said.

Staff Report

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