No window hours: Batangas governor bans Taal evacuees from checking homes

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 20 2020 09:53 AM | Updated as of Jan 20 2020 09:56 AM

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Batangas Governor Hermilando Mandanas has directed town mayors to cancel "window hours" that previously allowed residents to check their homes from which they evacuated due to the eruption of Taal Volcano, an official said Monday. 

"Ang stand po ng governor e sumunod po tayo sa forced evacuation at wala pong ipinahihintuloy na window hours," said the province's disaster office chief Lito Castro. 

The window hours had allowed residents of some towns to retrieve their belongings and livestock, while another "hazardous explosive eruption" of Taal remained "possible within hours to days," authorities said. 

"Pero napakadelikado po n'yan," Castro said of the window hours. "Wala naman po tayong parametro o oras kung kailan [ang pagsabog], para pong lindol iyan na hindi natin alam." 

(That's very dangerous. We don't have parameters or a time frame on when Taal will erupt; that's like an earthquake, we don't know when it will strike.) 

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Taal last Jan. 12 spewed a giant ash cloud that reached Metro Manila, drove around 104,000 people into evacuation centers, and left at least P3 billion worth of damage to crops and livestock, authorities said. 

A second eruption will spawn "faster" seismic events, Phivolcs volcano monitoring division chief Mariton Bornas said Sunday. 

"Open na iyong bulkan. Mas madali pong makasampa ang magma, wala nang pumipigil sa kaniya na pressure. Kung ano man iyong nakabara noong una e natanggal na," she explained. 

(The volcano is already open. The magma will climb up faster because there is no longer any pressure preventing it from doing so. Whatever was blocking it before had been removed.) 

DZMM, Jan. 20, 2020