LEGAZPI, PHILIPPINES (Conspiracy Talk News) – More than 9,000 people have already been evacuated from the area around the most active volcano in the Philippines.
The Mayon experienced a calm eruption with lava flowing through the crater, although experts warned that the process could become explosive at anytime.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology on Sunday night raised the alert level for Mayon to level three of five, indicating an increase in its tendency towards a dangerous eruption.
The lava went down at least half a kilometer (less than half a mile) through a crack from the crater and Monday morning clouds appeared halfway down the slope, said the director of the Institute, Renato Solidum.
Molten rocks and lava in the crater illuminated the night sky on Sunday despite the heavy clouds, while thousands of residents of the area fled to nearest designated evacuation shelters.
Thus far at least 9,000 people were moved from high-risk areas in an evacuation that is still underway, said Cedric Daep, of the emergency service of the province of Albay.
People in the danger zone erected huge white crosses in their neighbourhoods in the hope that this action would protect their lives and their homes.
“It’s dangerous for those that stayed behind,” Solidum said of the villagers who stayed to watch-over and protect their homes in a permanent danger zone near the volcano.
However, if the institute raises the alarm level any more, which would indicate a greater danger, the neighbours would have to leave the areas closest to the mountain.
The volcano rises in the northeastern province of Albay, a region where coconut trees are cultivated some 340 kilometers (240 miles) southeast of Manila.
“Three explosions recorded since Saturday have left ash in nearby towns and could have fractured the solidified lava in the crater, causing more dangerous lava flow”, Solidum explained.
With its almost perfect cone, the Mayon is popular with climbers and tourists and has erupted about 50 times in the last 500 years, at times very violently.
Experts fear that a large eruption can cause a pyroclastic flow, a mixture of gases and very hot volcanic waste that goes down the hillsides at extremely high speeds, incinerating or vaporising absolutely everything in it’s path.
There could also be wider explosions that carry ash to nearby towns and cities, such as Legazpi, capital of the province, which is about 15 kilometres (9 miles) away.