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76% chance Mayon explodes before 2010

Posted by feww on December 19, 2009

MAYON MAY EXPLODE BY YEAREND: FEWW

More than 250 tremors recorded at Mt Mayon, a sign that the volcano may be about to explode.

About 4 dozen minor explosions have occurred at the volcano, accompanied by off-white columns of smoke, gasses and ash that were ejected to a height of about 1,000 meters  above the summit,  according to the Phivolcs’ latest bulletin.

Below are some of the highlights of latest reports on Mayon:

  • Mayon’s activity has intensified since Friday.
  • Emissions of sulfur dioxide have exceeded 2,000 tons per day.
  • The lava flow has reached about 4 km from the summit crater along the Bonga Gully, generating secondary pyroclastic flows.
  • As the buildup of new lava on the cone continues to increase, the additional weight would cause the edifice to collapse, while the buildup of pressure inside the volcano would most probably result in a major  explosion.
  • Based on the the available evidence, Fire Earth Moderators believe there’s a 76 percent  chance  that Mt Mayon could explode before the year’s end.
  • If the volcano explodes, more lava would flow out of the crater.
  • Phivolcs officials are contemplating on raising the alert level at Mayon Volcano to  Level 4, which would indicate “hazardous volcanic eruption” is imminent.
  • Albay Public Safety and Emergency Management officials said more than 40,000 people or about 8,500 families from 30 villages had already been evacuated to 24 temporary shelters by noon Saturday.

The regional govt in Albay may evacuate an additional 70,000 villagers, in case heavy rains in the area threaten a repeat  2006 nightmare  in which more than 1,000 perished after typhoon Durian triggered mudslides of volcanic ash on November 30, which buried  several villages near the foot of the mountain.

Many of the villagers who have been evacuated reportedly sneak back into their villages to look after their animals and ready-to-harvest seasonal crops.

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