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Kanlaon eruption: 1,237 families still in evacuation centers

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines — At least 1,237 families or 4,190 residents of five barangays in La Castellana, Negros Occidental who were affected by the eruption of Kanlaon Volcano remain in evacuation centers.

Mayor Alme Rhummyla Mangilimutan said the evacuees are from Barangays Masulog, Biak Na Bato, Mansalanao, Cabagnaan and Sagang.

Provincial health officer Girlie Pinongan said many evacuees are suffering from respiratory ailments such as sore throat, cough, allergies and hypertension due to sulfurous odors and ashfall.

The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council had earlier said coarse ashfall was monitored in six areas and sulfurous odor in eight other areas.

Pinongan said the provincial health office (PHO) and the Department of Health dispatched sanitary inspectors to test water sources in areas affected by lahar, including faucets in evacuation centers, to prevent an outbreak of gastroenteritis cases.

Members of the PHO, city and municipal health offices in affected areas as well as of the Philippine Coast Guard are assisting in the medical checkup of evacuees.

The Office of Civil Defense deployed a water filtration truck in La Castellana.

The water filtration equipment can produce 50,000 liters of water per day.

The four to six-kilometer permanent danger zone of the volcano is a no-fly zone, according to the Mt. Kanlaon National Park.

MKNP protected area superintendent Dennis Piñosa issued the advisory, stressing the need to prevent disturbance of wildlife in the area.