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State of alert in Philippines as volcanic eruption approaches

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS)

Tuesday’s volcano launched massive ash and plume of ash with fumes mixed with lightning, south of the Philippine capital, Manila, as hundreds of flights were canceled for fear of an imminent “eruptive” eruption.

A thin layer of ash covered the houses and roads surrounding the volcano, 65 km from the capital, which accompanied its Sunday move with a series of earthquakes. At least ten thousand people were evacuated to shelters.

“We could not sleep because the house was shaking since we closed our eyes,” Leia Monteverde, the owner of a coffee shop, told AFP. “None of us slept, we were just prepared to leave.”

This volcano is located amid a crater lake, in an area that attracts tourists. It is one of the most active volcanoes in the archipelago, which witnesses strong volcanic and seismic activity due to its occurrence on the Pacific “Ring of Fire”.

As a precaution, schools in the area, government offices and the Philippine Stock Exchange continued to be closed.

Residents of the area rushed to the stores, wearing masks, after the authorities warned of the risk of breathing problems due to dust and ash.

Flights were resumed in part from Manila International Airport, after being suspended on Sunday for fear of the danger that ash belts mounting in the air on planes.

About 240 flights were canceled from Ninoy Aquino International Airport, which hampered the movement of tens of thousands of travelers.

Raise the alarm status.

“I am disappointed that (canceling the flight) will incur additional costs, and the wait is tiring,” said Juan Diocaras Filippini, 28, who works in Taiwan. “But we can do nothing.”

The volcano’s eruption began on Sunday with the eruption of fumes and rocks that were compressed inside, and reached a height of up to 15 km.

On Monday morning, you see rivers of lava flowing from the crater, according to the Institute of Volcanic and Seismic Studies in the Philippines.

And you see intermittent flashes of lightning over the crater in a phenomenon that science has not been able to fully explain, but which is due to static electricity charges inside the debris and mounting fumes.

The authorities raised the alert level to the second level for fear of a “volatile” eruption of the volcano in the coming hours and days.

Director of the Institute of Seismic and Volcanic Studies, Renato Solidum, told France Press that the lava is an indication of movement inside the volcano, but it is not known whether it will continue.

Tal erupted the last time in 1977, according to Solidum.

Seismologists at government agencies have detected volcanic magma rising toward the crater, while a series of earthquakes have been recorded near the volcano whose peak was lit by flashes of lightning.

The Institute of Seismic and Volcanic Studies pointed to the fall of debris pieces exceeding six centimeters in diameter in the areas surrounding the volcano.

The institute recorded 50 tremors at this point.

The Pacific “Ring of Fire” is a series of locations where Earth’s plates intersect, causing earthquakes and periodic volcanic movement.

Two years ago, the eruption of the “Mayon Mountain” volcano in the central Bicol region forced tens of thousands to evacuate their homes.

In 1991, the country witnessed the most powerful volcanic eruption as a result of the eruption of Mount Pinatubo volcano, which is located about a hundred kilometers northwest of Manila, killing more than 800 people.

The volcano then launched a cloud of smoke, traveling thousands of kilometers in days, and more than twenty aircraft were damaged.

The Philippines has been subjected to violent earthquakes in recent decades, with a magnitude of 7.8, which hit the tourist city of Baguio in 1990.

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