Officials from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) warned on Friday, January 17, that the Taal volcano in Batangas province remains dangerous despite a recent reduction in activity. The volcano emitted weaker ash and steam explosions on Thursday, January 16, and on Friday, but PHIVOLCS has kept Taal at Alert Level 4 (second highest on a five-tier scale), meaning that a hazardous explosive eruption is possible in hours or days. A 14 km (9 mi) exclusion zone remains in place and police and military personnel continue to block tens of thousands of residents from returning to their homes in at least 11 villages as a precaution. However, on Friday some people were allowed to check their homes in some of the evacuated villages. Power has also been restored to Tagaytay city as of Friday.
Power outages and disruptions to transportation and business are to be expected in the vicinity of Taal volcano over the coming hours and days, particularly in the event of a hazardous eruption.
Individuals present in the affected area are advised to avoid the vicinity of the volcano, monitor the situation, confirm flight reservations, anticipate transportation, business, and power disruptions, adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities (e.g. evacuation orders), and wear respiratory masks and covering clothing to protect skin from ashfall.
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