Mt. Taal is a volcano which has a nasty history of eruptions. In fact, the 1754 eruption caused entire towns to relocate to new locations, where they remain to this day. So, it’s no surprise that the volume of ash spewed out by the volcano has caused a lot of problems, such as suspension of classes, worse traffic, etc. To stay safe during volcanic eruptions, here are some things that you can do while waiting it out.
Keep all Doors and Windows Closed, and Avoid Going Out
The first thing you need to do at home is to make sure that all your doors and windows are closed. This is to prevent any ash from coming in. Also, as much as possible, try not to leave the safety of your home, especially if ash-fall is heavy in your area. This is to prevent you from damaging your vehicle, if you are old enough to drive, or your lungs, since being in the outdoors exposes your lungs to volcanic ash. So please, fortify your home to keep ash out!
NOTE: If the authorities advise you to evacuate, do evacuate, for they are only advising you to do so since your area is close to the volcano, or the eruption is just too strong.
When Outside, Keep Your Mouth and Nose Covered
However, if you do need to leave the house for whatever reason, please do yourself a favor and keep your mouth and nose covered, preferably with an N95 dust mask.
However, if you don’t have a dust mask, cover your mouth and nose with a gas mask, if you have one, or a wet cloth. This is to protect your lungs. Remember, Darth Vader did not just get horribly burned during his battle with Obi-Wan in Mustafar, he also inhaled volcanic ash, which is why he needs his signature respirator. In the real world, inhaling volcanic ash can aggravate existing lung problems, like asthma and bronchitis, or worse, it can even damage the lungs themselves. So please, keep your lungs safe using the proper protection, preferably a dust mask, or a wet cloth to cover your nose and mouth.
Keep All Containers Covered
Another thing we must remember is to keep all our containers covered, especially for food and drink, to prevent ash from contaminating our food. Not only will this ruin the taste of our meals, but getting ash into our systems is a toxic idea. So please, cover your containers to prevent mishaps and negative alterations in taste.
Use Eyeglasses/Goggles When Going Outside
When you do go out, please protect your eyes by wearing eyeglasses, for the nearsighted and farsighted, or goggles, for those who have 20/20 vision. This is to protect your eyes from any ashfall. Also contact lenses, for those who need corrective lenses, are not advisable because of abrasion from ashes might damage them, or worse, the eyes. So, keep your eyes protected when going out. But please, still remain indoors, to avoid any problems.
Safety is Priority
In the end, the most important priority during a natural disaster such as a volcanic eruption is safety, for no matter what happens, human lives are way more important than material things or hobbies. So, keep a cool head and follow these tips, for just like anything that happens, volcanic eruptions will pass. Stay safe and don’t do anything reckless!