Kanlaon Volcano eruption drills planned

The Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) and the Negros Occidental Provincial Government will conduct simulation drills in areas surrounding Kanlaon Volcano, Zephard Caellan, head of the provincial disaster management department, said.

Caellan yesterday said that it will be the OCD through regional director Jose Roberto Nuñez who will set the schedule for the drills as he wants to lead the activity.

He said that currently based on the report of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), Canlaon is still on Alert Level 2 “so the public is reminded that the four-kilometer danger zone is still off limits because there maybe creatic explosions brought about by the moderate unrest of the volcano.”

Caellan said, despite less activity of Kanlaon now “it is only Phivolcs that has the authority to downgrade the alert level.”

“We should have to wait for their official announcement,” he said, adding, “we should not let our guard down and be alert always.”

Directly affected under the four-kilometer danger zone are the cities of San Carlos, Bago, and La Carlota and the towns of Murcia, La Castellana, Moises Padilla and Salvador Benedicto.

Kanlaon, which straddles Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental is a centerpiece of Mount Kanlaon Natural Park, a national park located at least 30 kilometers from Bacolod City.* (NDB)