Screen grab from the Laging Handa briefing last July 2, 2021.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said two barangays in Agoncillo town and three barangays in Laurel town in Batangas were evacuated after Taal Volcano’s status was raised to Alert Level 3.

Alert Level 3 is the occurrence of “phreatomagmatic activity” where magma interacts with water, Undersecretary Renato Solidum said in the Laging Handa briefing on July 2 (Friday).

“Delikado po yan dahil maraming materyales na dala ang magma. Pag ganyan ang pagsabog pwede pong kumilos palayo sa crater ang tinatawag nating pyroclastic surge na pwedeng tumawid sa lawa kung mas malaki pa ang eruption at maging delikado ang buhay ng ating mga kababayan,” he said.

(It is dangerous because of the materials contained in magma. If the eruption is like that, it is possible that the pyroclastic surge could move further from the crater and it could cross the lake if a bigger eruption occurs. It could threaten the lives of our people.)

Solidum recommended using the “HazardHunterPH” app to locate places that are prone to earthquake or volcanic hazards.

Taal Volcano last erupted on Jan.12, 2020, covering parts of Luzon with a blanket of volcanic ash. Hazel N. Camba