15 Dec 2009

Tens of thousands evacuated near Mayon volcano

9:43 pm on 15 December 2009

The authorities in the Philippines are evacuating about 50,000 people from a danger zone near the country's most active volcano as it spews out burning mud and rocks.

Mayon volcano in the central Philippines started to release lava early this week and vulcanologists are expecting a major eruption in the next few days.

They say the alert level has been raised to number three, which means incandescent materials are detaching from the top of the volcano.

Level four means an eruption is imminent.

The last time Mayon erupted was in 2006.