Taal Volcano update: 6 quakes, weak steam reported

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MANILA, Philippines — Six volcanic earthquakes, as well as weak steam were recorded and reported from Taal Volcano, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said on Friday. 

Phivolcs’ 8 a.m. volcano bulletin, stated that the earthquakes were recorded in the past 24 hours. 

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Meanwhile, state volcanologists added that the weak steaming or fumarolic activity rising to five meters before drifting southwest was observed in the vents of Taal’s main crater, and fissure vents along the Daang Kastila Trail. 

Phivolcs said that Taal Volcano is still under Alert Level 1, meaning that it is still in an abnormal condition.

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“Department of Science and Technology (DOST)-Phivolcs reminds the public that at Alert Level 1, sudden steam-driven or phreatic explosions, volcanic earthquakes, minor ashfall, and lethal accumulations or expulsions of volcanic gas can occur and threaten areas within the Taal Volcano Island,” Phivolcs said.

Phivolcs serves as an umbrella department of DOST.

“DOST-Phivolcs strongly recommends that entry into Taal Volcano Island Taal’s Permanent Danger Zone, especially the vicinities of the Main Crater and the Daang Kastila fissure, must remain strictly prohibited,” the agency added. 

On Jan. 12, 2020, the volcano had a phreatic eruption, which generated a plume of ash around 100 meters high. 

A phreatic eruption is basically steam-driven and occurs when water beneath the ground or on the surface is subjected to heat by magma, lava, rocks and volcanic deposits.

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