‘Silent’ Bulusan monitored

July 11, 2020
Mount Bulusan
TAKING A BREATHER — Mount Bulusan in Sorsogon. Seismic instruments on Friday (July 10, 2020) failed to detect any volcanic events for the past 24-hour observation period. PNA file photo by NONIE ENOLVA

MOUNT Bulusan in Sorsogon, which has been rocked by a series of volcanic quakes in the past several days, has taken a breather as seismic instruments failed to detect any volcanic event in the past 24-hour observation period.

A bulletin released by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) on Friday said its monitoring network did not detect any volcanic quake while weak emission of white steam-laden plumes that cascaded downslopes from the lower southeast vent was observed

Paul Alanis, acting Phivolcs resident volcanologist, said in an interview that they are adopting a “wait and see” stand, considering that the “lull” exhibited by the volcano could mean either it is gathering steam for a volcanic event or returning to a normal state.

Alanis, however, advised the public to remain vigilant, just like in any other disaster event.

“Huwag tayong maging kampante,  lull before a storm,” he added. 

Alanis explained that volcanic quakes occur when rock fracturing and degassing beneath the volcano’s vent takes place.

The Phivolcs monitoring instruments have recorded more than 80 volcanic quakes in the past five days, prompting the agency to raise the volcano status to Alert Level 1 (Abnormal).

It reiterated its warning to the public not to enter the 4-km.-radius Permanent Danger Zone, including the 2-km. Extended Danger Zone on the southeastern sector of the volcano due to a sudden and hazardous phreatic eruption.

The Phivolcs also informed civil aviation authorities to advise airplane pilots to avoid flying close to the volcano’s summit as ash from any sudden phreatic eruption can be hazardous to aircraft. PNA