Philippines

Taal Volcano Eruption 2020: Philippines - Calabarzon Region Situation Report No. 2 as of 21 January 2020

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Situation Report
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DISPLACEMENT OVERVIEW
Data from DSWD DROMIC, 21 Jan 2020

DISPLACED
235,655 individuals
61,123 households

497 Evacuation Centres
Hosting 148,514 Individuals

SITUATION OVERVIEW

On January 12, 2020 around 1:00pm local time, Taal Volcano located in the province of Batangas, Calabarzon Region began showing signs of unrest after 43 years of inactivity. According to the Philippine Institute of Vulcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), increasing steam activity was observed in at least five areas inside the main crater with frequent phreatic explosions that generated a steam laden tephra column reaching 10-15km high.

As of January 20, 2020, activity in the volcano has been characterised by steady steam emission and infrequent weak explosions that generated ash plumes 500 to 1000 meters tall and dispersed ash southwest of the Main Crater. For the past 24 hours, the Taal Volcano Network recorded 673 volcanic earthquakes including 12 low-frequency earthquakes. Such intense seismic activity likely signifies continuous magmatic intrusion beneath the Taal edifice, which may lead to further eruptive activity.

Alert Level 4 remains in effect over Taal Volcano. This means that hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours to days. DOST-PHIVOLCS strongly reiterates total evacuation of Taal Volcano Island and high-risk areas as identified in the hazard maps within the 14-km radius from Taal Main Crater and along the Pansipit River Valley where fissuring has been observed. Currently Tagatay City has been approved for re-opening given its placement on the higher ridge, but other areas within the 14km radius remain no-go zones.

INITIAL RAPID ASSESSMENT

During 18th and 19th January 2020, IOM surge team conducted initial rapid assessments in Batangas and Cavite provinces. Primary focus of the assessment was around the management of evacuation centres (collective sites) and the overall displacement scenario. The team visited the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and 7 Evacuation Centres (ECs), including the largest sites per DSWD/DROMIC data, as well as randomly selected smaller sites and Municipalities. The type of evacuation centres visited include those utilising school buildings, sports complex as well as dedicated municipality evacuation centres.

The assessment also included piloting of the DTM form with Kobo Collect to prepare for a full DTM data collection roll out with partners in the coming week (22-24 January) as well as initial observations on the situation and needs for partners’ planning.

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