Yesterday, we received a text message from NDRRMC (National Disaster Risk Reduction & Management Council, updating us about Taal Volcano possible eruption.
The text message said that we have to be careful and to follow notice about evacuation.. Then, the volcano was raised to alert level 3, earthquakes are expected during this time. At around 3:16 to 3:21 in the afternoon steam-driven or phreatic eruption occurred. We need to follow notices from the authorities.
At alert level no. 3 as per the PHIVOLCS (Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology), probable intrusion of magma at depth, which may or may not lead to magmatic eruption. Entry in PDZ (permanent danger zone) is prohibited.
My daughter also received the text message and she immediately approached me yesterday asking me what it meant. She got scared.
She was scared yesterday because last year, January 12, 2020, to be exact, Taal Volcano erupted. Taal Volcano was said to be the smallest volcano in the Philippines located in Taal Batangas. On the upper part of Batangas is the Cavite province, where we are living.
This photo was before the eruption last year. The view of the Taal Volcano from Tagaytay City is breathtaking.. It is like a painting. So good to look at.
I remember vividly that time, my sister and her daughter were with us in our other house. It was daytime but it seemed like it was so dark. Some people from Tagaytay noticed smoke coming from the volcano’s mouth.
Around 2 to 3 in the afternoon that January 12, 2020, loud rumbling sounds were heard, seemed like big thunders, like a vast explosion from the sky. It became worst around 7:30 in the evening when we saw in the sky the explosions that seemed to reach the heaven. It was like a movie scene from Independence Day of Tom Cruise. It was like millions of fireworks exploded accidentally in the sky. It was horrible.. I was thinking about the people in Batangas and also in Tagaytay (where most of my relatives live). The night was so long that time, a lot of explosions in the sky, earthquakes.. There were lots of facebook posts from my friends and relatives screaming their hearts out, as they are so frightened.
January 13, there was no electricity. Ashfalls were everywhere. People were so scared. A lot evacuated. We are still thankful to God that we were safe in our place. Batangas and nearby cities were greatly affected. All became gray and black. It was like a scene from a horror movie.
This photo was taken by my father after the eruption. This is my grand father’s front yard. All became black.. Ash fall thickness was estimated to be 1 foot or more.
Before the pandemic, we were already wearing masks. The dust made us hard to breathe and it caused skin problems. There was no electricity also because the powerlines were succumbed by the ashfalls. There were lots of panic buying during these times too. We just needed to stay at home.
My relatives who were living in the nearby cities evacuated and rented houses for the elderlies. The PHIVOLCS was closely monitoring the volcano. Evacuees spent weeks in the evacuation centers. The volcano became quiet. There were some earthquakes still but there were no indication of another major eruption.
Little by little, people went back to their homes and did the cleaning. One seemed to be a never ending cleaning was then finished. Everything went back to normal after a few months.. Then this pandemic happened.
Now, we are again in the look-out of what could happen next. Yesterday afternoon, around 5 o clock, the sky was dark in our place, but it did not rain. I checked in the internet and there was an explosion again of the volcano.
Praying that there will no eruption again. Filipinos are resilient but we are getting tired too.