Philippines

Philippines: NDCC Update - Sitrep No. 16 Mayon Volcano update

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DATE: 26 December 2009, 10:00 PM

Sources: DOST-PHIVOLCS, DSWD, DOH, DepEd, OCDRC-V, ALBAY PDCC, AFP, JTF MAYON, DPWH V

l. SITUATION OVERVIEW

- Alert Level 4 remains hoisted over Mayon Volcano which means that a hazardous eruption is possible within days. To ensure the safety of the public, PHIVOLCS-DOST is reiterating that the Extended Danger Zone (EDZ) from the summit of eight kms at the southern sector of the volcano and seven kms at the northern sector should be free from human activity

A. Observations:

- Mayon Volcano (13.2576 N, 123.6856 E) continued to show an intense level of activity during the past 24-hour observation period

- Seismic activity remained elevated in number and size as the seismic network detected a total of eight hundred seventy one (871) volcanic earthquakes. Ninety eight (98) rock fall events related to the detachment of lava fragments at the volcano's upper slopes were also detected. Three (3) of these events were observed to have generated pyroclastic flows that moved down within 2-km from the crater.

- Sulfur Dioxide (S02) emission rate was high and was measured at an average of 2,378 tons/day yesterday, 24 December 2009.

- Ninety-six ash explosions were observed during times of good visibility. These explosions produced light brown to grayish ash columns that reached heights of up to 2 km.

- One hundred twenty five (125) rumbling and booming sounds from the volcano were heard at the Lignon Hill Observatory in Legaspi City

B. Recommendations

- Areas just outside of the EDZ should prepare for evacuation in the event that explosive eruptions intensify

- Active river channels and those perennially identified as lahar-prone in the southern sector should also be avoided especially during bad weather conditions or when there is heavy and prolonged rainfall

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III. AFFECTED/DISPLACED POPULATION (Tab A)

- As of 11:00 AM, 26 December 2009, the number of evacuees staying in 29 evacuation centers is 10,032 families/47,563 persons

- Ten days into evacuation, the PDCC projects an emergence of health related problems based on prior experiences and the current weather which is likely to contribute to the increasing risks for colds and other related diseases. Thus, the fear that zero casualty goal may be compromised by health risks and the willingness of the population-at-risk to stay in the evacuation centers

- PDCC Albay reported four (4) cases of conjunctivitis or sore eyes in Tabaco City