By Connie Calipay

Mayon Volcano (PNA photo by Conne Calipay)

LEGAZPI CITY – The Department of Tourism in Bicol (DOT-5) and the provincial government of Albay are investigating a video posted on social media showing backdoor climbers at the summit of Mt. Mayon. 

Climbing the top of the volcano is dangerous and prohibited as it remains restive and poses a threat of phreatic explosions that are extremely lethal, DOT-Bicol Regional Director Herbie Aguas said. 

“We are closely coordinating with the provincial government of Albay as to the incident. We are looking into the details to verify if there are tour guides involved and we will surely take action on revoking their certifications,” Aguas said in an interview. 

He reiterated that climbing Mayon is prohibited under Albay Provincial Ordinance 0023-2026. 

Section 11 of the ordinance enumerates acts that are prohibited such as summit climbing, camping, and overnight stays both in Camp 1 and Camp 2, and smoking, among others. 

A penalty of PHP5,000 and imprisonment of not exceeding one year shall be imposed for violations of any or all of the stipulated rules and regulations of the ordinance. 

“We strongly discourage tourists from climbing Mayon Volcano as it is still on alert level 1. This is to ensure the safety of mountaineers and tourists. Activities inside the 6-kilometer permanent danger zone are strictly regulated to prevent the loss of lives and properties,” Aguas said. 

He also reminded tourists to always avail services of DOT-accredited tour operators, guides and establishments when visiting Bicol. (PNA)