No eruption in Taal Volcano, just thunderstorm

MANILA, Philippines – There was no eruption in Taal Volcano on Sunday, May 23, Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) director Renato Solidum Jr. confirmed.

Lightning activities near Taal Volcano
Lightning activities near Taal Volcano on Sunday, May 23. Photo by The Summit Express

Solidum clarified that it is just a thunderstorm in the province of Batangas.

Phivolcs made a clarification after reports of alleged explosion at Taal Volcano circulated online.

The agency added that the lightning activities is not related to any volcanic activity.

Earlier, the agency said "Taal Volcano Network did not detect any volcanic earthquake, however low-level background tremor persisted since 08 April 2021."

Phivolcs observed on Saturday, May 22, the "upwelling of hot volcanic fluids" at Main Crater, which generated plumes that reached 1.5 kilometers tall before drifting to the north-northwest.

Alert Level 2 (Increased Unrest) is currently maintained over Taal Volcano. DOST-Phivolcs reminds the public that at Alert Level 2, sudden steam-driven or phreatic explosions, volcanic earthquakes, minor ashfall, and lethal accumulations or expulsions of volcanic gas can occur and threaten areas within and around Taal Volcano Island (TVI).

Phivolcs strongly recommends that entry must be strictly prohibited into Taal Volcano Island, Taal’s Permanent Danger Zone or PDZ, especially the vicinities of the Main Crater and the Daang Kastila fissure, and occupancy and boating on Taal Lake.

Local government units are advised to continuously assess and strengthen the preparedness of previously evacuated barangays around Taal Lake in case of renewed unrest. Civil aviation authorities must advise pilots to avoid flying close to the volcano as airborne ash and ballistic fragments from sudden explosions and wind-remobilized ash may pose hazards to aircraft.

— The Summit Express

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