Taal Volcano’s status lowered from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3

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“Taal Volcano’s condition in the two weeks following the 12-13 January 2020 phreatomagmatic eruption (main eruptive phase) has generally declined into less frequent volcanic earthquake activity, decelerated ground deformation of the Taal Caldera and Taal Volcano Island (TVI) edifices and weak steam/gas emissions at the Main Crater,” PhilippinesPhilippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) said in its bulletin released 8 am January 26.

It noted that Alert Level 3 means that there is a decreased tendency towards hazardous explosive eruption but should not be interpreted that unrest has ceased or that the threat of a hazardous eruption has disappeared.

“Should an uptrend or pronounced change in monitored parameters forewarn a potential hazardous explosive eruption, the Alert Level may be raised back to Alert Level 4,” PHIVOLCS said.

It said that people residing within areas at high risk to base surges who have returned after the Alert Level was stepped down must thus be prepared for a quick and organized evacuation at such time. 

PHILVOCS said that should there be a persistent downtrend in monitored parameters after a sufficient observation period, the Alert Level will be further lowered to Alert Level 2.

PHIVOLCS is remindind the public that at Alert Level 3, sudden steam-driven and even weak phreatomagmatic explosions, volcanic earthquakes, ashfall and lethal volcanic gas expulsions can occur and threaten areas within TVI and nearby lakeshores.

PHIVOLCS is also recommending that entry into TVI, Taal’s Permanent Danger Zone, as well as into areas over Taal Lake and communities west of TVI within a seven (7) kilometer-radius from the Main Crater must be strictly prohibited.