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‘I’m Dying To Come Home’: Maltese Man Stranded In The Philippines After Lava-Spewing Volcano Leads To Mass Evacuation

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As millions are evacuated following a deadly volcano eruption, one Maltese man finds himself stranded alone in the Philippines and at the mercy of the ash cloud that prevents him from coming home.

Jean Zammit kicked off 2020 with a two-week vacation to the enchanting islands of the Philippines where he spent his days soaking up the sun on the shores of Coron Palawan and Boracay.


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A post shared by Jean Zammit (@jeanpaulmakeup) on


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A post shared by Jean Zammit (@jeanpaulmakeup) on

But as Jean was preparing to come home, Manila’s Taal Volcano blasted steam, ash and pebbles nine miles into the sky.

Flights have since been cancelled, with droves being evacuated and inciting nationwide fear of an explosive eruption.

“Most of the international airlines have cancelled their flights due to the ash cloud,” Jean told Lovin Malta. “We have no information when they’ll fly again.”

At least 10 flights have been cancelled as a result of the looming grey cloud that covers Manila, including the Emirates flight that was supposed to bring Jean back home. As a result, the Maltese makeup artist has been forced to desperately search for accommodation, something he was lucky enough to find given the position he is in.

“Thank God I had some savings because not everyone can afford to pay for a hotel for a few more days. ROCS Group is helping me since the airline won’t provide any accommodation in the case of national disasters. It’s so important to have travel insurance because you never know when you need it.”

Jean has managed to avoid most of the immediate danger by being in the nearby city of Cebu but that doesn’t make his time there any less stressful as Philippine authorities have urged a total evacuation of nearly half a million people near the capital Manila fearing a possible explosive eruption from the active Taal volcano.

“I am safe but all anyone can talk about is the eruption,” he said. “They are evacuating people and many are stuck like me with no idea when we’ll fly back. We just need to wait and see.”

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology has raised the alert level to four, meaning an explosive eruption could happen in the coming hours or day.

Its highest alert level is five, indicating an eruption is taking place.

If that is the case, Jean might just find himself stuck in the Philippines for much longer than he originally anticipated.

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