Magnitude 6.2 earthquake shatters Philippines

A magnitude 6.2 earthquake has shattered Phillipine.

According to the US Geological Survey, the seismic event happened on Thursday June 15, 2023.

The earthquake occurred at a depth of 112 kilometers (77 miles) around 10:00 am (0200 GMT) in the waters near Calatagan town, which is approximately a three-hour drive from the capital city of Manila.

Emil Mendoza, the police chief of Calatagan, stated that he and his staff quickly sought safety outdoors following the tremor, which was felt across the densely populated heartland of the country, including Manila. Mendoza described the earthquake as relatively strong, stating that they had to evacuate to open spaces.

Although there have been no reports of casualties or damage immediately following the earthquake, authorities responsible for disaster management have been dispatched to assess the impact of the seismic activity, as confirmed by Mendoza.

Ronald Torres, the disaster officer in Calatagan, mentioned that the quake lasted between 30 seconds and a minute. The national seismological agency warned of potential aftershocks but ruled out the possibility of tsunami waves due to the earthquake’s depth.

The tremor caused people in the capital to hurriedly evacuate buildings. In response, the runways and taxiways at Ninoy Aquino International Airport were temporarily closed to inspect for any pavement damage, according to the country’s transportation department. The operation of the metro system in the capital was also halted temporarily to assess potential damage to the tracks.

Images circulating on social media, verified by AFP, depicted a crane truck swaying from the force of the earthquake at a Manila port. Diego Mariano, an information officer at the civil defense office, stated that authorities are still evaluating the impact of the earthquake. He reassured the public that, as of the reporting time, there have been no major damages or casualties. The assessment process is currently ongoing.

Earthquakes are a common occurrence in the Philippines, as the country is situated along the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” a region characterized by intense seismic and volcanic activity spanning from Japan through Southeast Asia and across the Pacific basin. The

“Philippines has witnessed devastating earthquakes in the past, such as the magnitude 7.1 earthquake that struck Bohol Island in October 2013, resulting in landslides, over 200 fatalities, and significant damage to historic churches,’ a report revealed.

Another notable event was the magnitude 7.8 earthquake in 1990 in the northern part of the country, which caused severe destruction, claimed over 1,200 lives, and produced a ground rupture spanning more than a hundred kilometers.

Sources: Agence France-Presse and SGP

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