Strong Quake Jolts Western Visayas and Cebu Regions
A magnitude 6.9 earthquake rocked the island of Negros at 11: 49 AM this morning, with lesser shocks experienced in Iloilo and Cebu. The earthquake was felt up to Bicol region, Mindoro Island, and Mindanao. As of post time, aftershocks are still felt here in some areas ranging from 4.5 to 5.8.
Here in Iloilo City, malls and offices were immediately evacuated and classes were suspended. The streets of down town Iloilo City were full of people who moved out of the establishments along the way. Hospitals such as St Paul’s also evacuated their patients. The coal power plant located at La Paz automatically shut down which led to city-wide brownout immediately during the quake.
Damages in structures here in Iloilo were minimal, with small cracks reported at some shopping malls and buildings. No casualty was reported here in the city. The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported about 13 casualties while about 40 missing due to landslide in other regions.
Phivolcs said the following intensities were felt in the following areas (source – ABS-CBN News):
Intensity VII – Dumaguete City; Vallehermoso, Negros Oriental
Intensity VI – La Carlota City and La Castellana, Negros Occidental; Argao, Cebu
Intensity V – Roxas City; Dao and Ivisan, Capiz; Iloilo City; Ayungon, Negros Oriental; Kanlaon City; Lapu-lapu City; Guimaras; Cebu City; San Carlos City; Bacolod City; Sagay City; Tagbilaran City; Candoni, Binalbagan, Negros Occidental
Intensity IV – San Jose de Buenavista, Pandan, Anini-y, Patnungon, Antique; Kalibo, Aklan; Dipolog City; Sipalay, Negros Occidental; Ormoc City
Intensity III – Butuan City, Agusan del Norte; Legaspi City, Albay; Carmen, Cagayan de Oro; Tacloban City; Catbalogan; Saint Bernard, Southern Leyte; Masbate, Masbate; Cagayan de Oro City
Intensity II – Cabid-an, Sorsogon; Borongan, Eastern Samar; Mambajao, Camiguin
Intensity I – Pagadian City
The United States Geological Survey, meanwhile, initially measured the magnitude of the quake at 6.8. It later revised the magnitude at 6.7.
The USGS listed the following areas as the epicenter:
- 70 kms (44 miles) north from Dumaguete, Negros
- 79 kms (49 miles) west northwest from Tagbilaran, Bohol
- 80 kms (50 miles) south southeast from Bacolod, Negros
- 574 kms (356 miles) south southeast from Manila
- The agency said the earthquake had a depth of 46.6 kms.
The USGS has also recorded at least 2 aftershocks from the strong quake.
The first recorded aftershock, which had a magnitude of 4.8, occurred 62 kms north of Dumaguete at 12:03 p.m.
The second aftershock, which had a magnitude of 5.6, was recorded at 12:20 p.m. 71 kms south southeast of Bacolod.
The Intensity V experienced in Iloilo City and other areas is described by PHIVOLCS as:
Strong – Generally felt by most people indoors and outdoors. Many sleeping people are awakened. Some are frightened, some run outdoors. Strong shaking and rocking felt throughout building. Hanging objects swing violently. Dining utensils clatter and clink; some are broken. Small, light and unstable objects may fall or overturn. Liquids spill from filled open containers. Standing vehicles rock noticeably. Shaking of leaves and twigs of trees are noticeable. Source: http://earthquake.phivolcs.dost.gov.ph
I was at DTI Regional office at JM Basa when the quake hit. We calmly evacuated the building while waiting for the quake to end. The initial jolt took about 30 to 40 seconds. You could see the water at the pavement violently swaying. After the quake finished, we ended our transaction at the office and headed at the Assumption School to take my niece. Along the way, while I was driving at JM Basa, at about 12:20 PM, a strong but shorter aftershock was felt. Schools, businesses, the city and provincial capitol offices were suspended for the rest of the day. And as more people rushed to go home, traffic ensued at Iloilo City central business district area.
7:34 PM: As I’m writing this post a strong aftershock struck again. I’m posting this while a slow swaying is rocking me.
Tips during Earthquakes:
Things You’ll Need
Portable Radios, Bottled Water, Dried Foods, First Aid Kits, Flashlights
1. Stay calm and be prepared for aftershocks.
2. Check for injuries and administer first aid.
3. Listen on your portable radio for information and instructions.
4. Check your home for gas and water leaks, broken electrical wiring or sewage lines, and cracks and damage. If there is damage, turn the utility off at the source. Immediately report gas leaks to your utility company.
5. Check for downed power lines.
6. If you must evacuate, leave a message at home telling others where you can be found.
Tags: Iloilo City