Phivolcs: Mayon Volcano Still Unsafe for Mountaineers

Monday, April 26th, 2010

LEGAZPI CITY, April 21  - "Mayon Volcano is still unsafe for mountaineers and human activity within the six-kilometer permanent danger zone remain is also prohibited," Philippine Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) resident volcanologist Ed Laguerta told the public.

He warned mountaineers and tour guides that climbing Mayon in not safe until now because the volcano is still emitting gases and lava. "Although the lava and gases emission are minimal still it is dangerous to human," he said.

"Mayon Volcano is still under alert level 1, this means that human activity in the area is not allowed," Laguerta explained.

According to him, mild explosions have been observed in the crater. "Aside from mild explosion there are thousands volcanic debris deposited around the body of the volcano and it might collapse any time."

Laguerta said once Phivolcs declares Mayon Volcano under zero alert level that is the only time that mountaineers can be allowed to climb.

Jukes Nunez, Albay provincial safety and emergency office (APSEMO) operation chief, said Mayon is still in abnormal stage. "Sudden rock falls might occur," he said, adding that "The policy of Albay is no human activity within Mayon Volcano."

Phivolcs stated that crater glow is still visible. The public is reminded that the six-kilometer radius permanent danger zone remains off-limits due to continuing threat from sudden small explosions and rock falls from the upper and middle slopes of the volcano.

Active river channels and those areas perennially identified as lahar prone in the southeast sector should also be avoided especially during bad weather conditions or when there are heavy and prolonged rains. (PNA)