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Geohazards pp 13-24 | Cite as

Volunteer Observers Program: a tool for monitoring volcanic and seismic events in the Philippines

  • Perla J. Delos Reyes
Part of the AGID Report Series book series (ARS)

Abstract

The Philippine Archipelago is one of the most tectonically active and volcanic regions of the world and, as such, frequent occurrences of volcanic eruptions and destructive earthquakes are to be expected. One of the main objectives in the creation of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) was the mitigation of the effects of volcanic eruptions and earthquakes through prediction and prompt warning.

The Philippines lacks the technology and manpower needed for its program on volcanic and earthquake prediction. Therefore PHIVOLCS devised a Volunteer Observer Program to enlist the help of residents in areas likely to be affected by volcanic and seismic events, and to increase its sources of precursory signs such as crater glow, rumbling sounds, anomalous animal behavior, steaming activity, sulfurous odor, and drying vegetation. Questionnaires on observable manifestations of volcanic or seismic events were distributed to observers in communities in areas presently being monitored for volcanic or seismic activity by PHIVOLCS; these are collected according to set schedules, though unusual phenomena are reported immediately.

The ultimate aim of the program is to encourage local residents to participate actively and, in so doing, awaken the public’s awareness by increasing their knowledge of the dangers and risks posed by volcanic eruptions and earthquake occurrences. Preliminary results have shown that this program is indeed useful and could be adapted to other developing countries. Development of the scheme in geologically active areas could eventually lead to the proper implementation of an effective prediction, warning, and disaster-preparedness program.

Keywords

Volcanic Eruption Earthquake Prediction Earthquake Occurrence Active Volcano Precursory Sign 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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References

  1. Newhall, C.G., and S. Self, 1982. The Volcano Explosivity Index (VEI): an estimate of explosive magnitude for historical volcanism. Journal of Geophysical Research (Oceans and Atmospheres), vol 87, p 1231–1238.CrossRefADSGoogle Scholar
  2. Simpkin, T., L. Siebert, L. McClelland, D. Bridge, C. Newhall, and J. H. Latter, 1981. Volcanoes of the World: A Regional Directory, Gazetteer, and Chronology of Volcanism During the Last 10,000 Years. Hutchinson & Ross, Stroudsberg, Pennsylvania, 240 p.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© G.J.H. McCall, D.J.C. Laming and S.C. Scott 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Perla J. Delos Reyes

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