On March 4, Thursday, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) raised Alert Level 1 over Mt. Pinatubo in Central Luzon after the Pinatubo Volcano Network (VPN) “detected a total of 1,772 imperceptible earthquakes” since January 20, 2021.
“Given the persistence of seismic activity, DOST-PHIVOLCS is raising the status of Pinatubo Volcano from Alert Level 0 to Alert Level 1,” Phivolcs said in a statement. “This means that there is low-level unrest that may be related to tectonic processes beneath the volcano and that no imminent eruption is foreseen.”
Phivolcs set the lowest Pinatubo alert level at 0 (Normal). This happens when there are no remarkable volcanic earthquakes happening within the area. On the other hand, the institute set the highest possible Pinatubo alert level at 5 (Hazardous Eruption Ongoing). This happens when magmatic eruptions are taking place.
In relation, Pinatubo Alert Level 1 (Low Level of Volcanic Unrest). This means that there is a slight increase in local tectonic or hydrothermal activity. No volcanic eruption is imminent.
For such reasons, Phivolcs advised against the entry into the Pinatubo Crater area. If needed, it should be done with extreme caution.
LGU and surrounding communities are reminded to be always prepared for “both earthquake and volcanic hazards.” Everyone concerned are also asked to “review, prepare and strengthen their contingency, emergency and other disaster preparedness plans.”
DOST-PHIVOLCS is closely monitoring Mt. Pinatubo’s condition and “all new developments will be relayed to all concerned.”
Mt. Pinatubo’s most destructive eruption happened in June 1991. It killed almost 850 people and displaced around 250,000 families. The 1991 Pinatubo eruption also caused billions worth of damage to surrounding properties, infrastructure, and agriculture.
(Source – PHIVOLCS)
You might also want to read: Today in PH History: Taal Volcano Erupted in 1911