Citizens Disaster Response Center | CDRC

Mayon eruption imminent; 30,000 evacuated to government shelters


Dec 09



Lava and red-hot volcanic fragments rolled some 4 kilometers down the slopes of Mayon Volcano, visible at night to Albay residents in yet another terrifying display of the volcano’s beauty and destructive power. The pyroclastic flow was preceded by a minor ash explosion in the morning of December 14, followed by several other small explosions in the same day.

Molten rock and glowing lava fragments continue to issue from the volcano summit as of this writing. Steam emissions reaching 200 meters high was observed in the past 24 hours, drifting towards the west and southwest of the volcano. Ash explosions in the last two days have showered parts of Camalig, Guinobatan, and Ligao City with light ashfall. Data from PHIVOLCS also indicated sulfur dioxide emission levels at 750 tons per day, way above the normal rate.

Authorities raised the alert status of the volcano to Alert Level 3, warning that a hazardous eruption may occur within weeks. Areas within 6 kilometers of the crater and an extended zone in the direction of the main gully are in danger of volcanic flows, which may occur during sudden explosions. By December 15, the government has ordered the evacuation of these areas, encompassing parts of Daraga, Camalig, Guinobatan, Malilipot, and Sto. Domingo municipalities as well as portions of Legazpi City, Tabaco City, and Ligao City.

Close to 30,000 residents have been evacuated to 17 pre-designated evacuation centers around Albay province. Below is the partial evacuation report issued by the Albay Public Safety and Emergency Management Office (APSEMO).

Evacuation report as of 12 noon, December 16, 2009 (Source: APSEMO)

City/Municipality Barangay Population Evacuation Center
Families Persons
Camalig Quirangay 633 2,747 Bariw Elem. Sch.
Sua 331 1,429 Baligang Elem. Sch.
Cabangan 152 687 Cabangan Elem. Sch.
Tumpa 294 1,353 Baligang Elem. Sch.
Salugan 170 754 Camalig Natl. Highschool
Anoling 221 916 FVR-Tagaytay Reloc. Site
Subtotal 6 1,801 7,886
Daraga Bañadero 489 1,823 Anislag Reloc. Site
Alcala 360 1,441 Daraga North Central Sch.
Matnog 256 1,500 Anislag Reloc. Site
3 217 868 Daraga Highschool
Subtotal 1,322 5,632
Legazpi City Mabinit 354 1,840 San Roque Elem. Sch.
Matanag 406 2,111 Albay Central Sch.
Buyuan 838 4,357 Bagumbayan Central Sch.
Bonga 744 3,868 Gogon Central Sch.
Padang 81 421 Albay Central Sch.
Subtotal 5 2,423 12,597
Tabaco City Magapo 184 912 San Antonio Elem. Sch.
Buang 105 542 Mayon Elem. Sch.
Subtotal 2 289 1,454
Malilipot Calbayog 545 2,406 San Jose Elem. Sch.
San Roque 34 125 Malilipot Central Sch.
Canaway 134 620 Malilipot Central Sch.
Subtotal 3 713 3,151
Sto. Domingo Lidong 11 41 Bical Natl. Highschool
Subtotal 1 11 41
TOTAL 20 6,559 30,761

Although the threat to human lives seems to have been averted due to preemptive evacuation, economic hardships will likely affect the thousands of farming families who cultivate the fertile land along the slopes of Mt. Mayon. Most vegetable production in the province is located in this area. Many farmers here are now forced to gather their produce ahead of the harvest season to avoid further losses. In other farms, immature crops are exposed to damages from volcanic debris as volcanic activity escalates.

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The volcano has been growing restive for the past several months. Increased volcanic activity was observed in July this year, prompting PHIVOLCS to raise the alert status to Level 2. Mayon is the most active volcano in the country, having erupted close to 50 times in the past 400 years.

Appeal for assistance:

Donations for the evacuees may be sent through TABI (Tarabang Para sa Bicol, Inc.) at 49 First Park Subdivision, Brgy. Sagpon, Daraga, Albay 4501. Cash donations may also be deposited to the following account:

Bank Name: Banco De Oro – Legaspi Branch


Account #: 1810089873

For more information please contact:


TABI Executive Director

Mobile#: 0929 702 6602
Telefax: (052) 483 2453