Are you ready for the Big One?

Freema Gloria   •   April 16, 2019   •   7202

Experts warn of the so-called “Big One” – a staggering 7.2 magnitude earthquake brewing in the West Valley fault that could wipe out 114,000 homes in Metro Manila and claim 34,000 lives in one devastating hour.

The West Valley Fault is a 100-kilometer fault line that traverses the cities of Marikina, Quezon City, Pasig, Taguig, Makati, Muntinlupa, and other nearby provinces.

The fault moves every 400 years. Its recorded last move was 357 years ago. This means that the West Valley Fault is now ripe for another strong quake that could occur anytime.

A study conducted by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), paints a harrowing scenario of the Big One’s aftermath.

Around 10% of the buildings in Metro Manila will be severely damaged while seven bridges are expected to collapse.

Predicted to be severely affected are providers of utilities such as power, water and telecomunication.

Around 4,615 kilometers of water pipes will be subjected to 4,000 points of breakage. Thirty kilometers of electric cables will be cut resulting in a massive black out. Meanwhile, 95 kilometers of telecom cables will be disconnected, causing mobile phone services to be congested and out of use.

Fires are also expected to occur due to short circuits and gas leakages. Twenty thousand people are estimated to perish from being trapped in these burning buildings.

Aside from Metro Manila, some parts of Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna and Cavite will also be affected.

So, the question to all: Are you ready for the Big One?

Public service advocate, Kuya Daniel Razon, through his “Tulong Muna Bago Balita” campaign, has been hosting a UNTV Rescue Summit to help the government prepare the public and local government rescue units for the eventual movement of the West Valley Fault.

In partnership with the Marikina City government, the 4th Rescue Summit will be held on April 28, 2019, Sunday at the Marikina Sports Center.

Starting at 6:00 AM, the whole day event will be packed with rescue competitions, seminars and exhibits which will be capped by a mini-concert to be hosted by the Rescue Summit’s radio partner, Wish 107.5.

Prepare yourself and your family for the Big One. Join the 4th UNTV Rescue Summit. Admission is free. — Raymond Lacsa

Danger remains as volcanic activities increase in Taal

Marje Pelayo   •   January 20, 2020

Aerial photos Taal Volcano eruption aftermath epa08135676 Handout aerial photo provided by the Office of Civil Defense shows the Taal Volcano crater in Batangas province, south of Manila, Philippines, 17 January 2020. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) has kept the alert level at four, following the volcano’s eruption on 12 January 2020. EPA-EFE/OFFICE OF CIVIL DEFENSE HANDOUT HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES

MANILA, Philippines – Over a week since Taal Volcano began its eruptive activity, danger still remains according to experts.

In fact, a total of 787 earthquakes have been recorded in the volcano island on Saturday (January 18) alone, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS).

This frequency of ground shaking is double the number of all volcanic earthquakes recorded in the previous six days of Taal’s volcanic activity.

Over the weekend, more than 200 tremors were recorded within the range of magnitude 1.2 and 4.1, the PHIVOLCS said and on Sunday evening (January 19), the strongest shaking – magnitude 4.2 earthquake – was felt in Mabini, Batangas.

The volcano institute have also observed that Taal is producing about one-kilometer high white ash pillar and sulfur dioxide of around 1,442 tons each day.

Because of these observations, PHIVOLCS cannot just lift or downgrade Alert Level 4 that is currently in effect around the volcano island because the possibility of a massive explosive eruption remains high within hours or days.

Thus, PHIVOLCS strongly appeals for understanding and more patience from residents and reminds them not to return yet to their villages especially those within the 14-km danger zone.

Volcanic earthquakes recorded in Taal:

  • January 19 – 787
  • January 18 – 366
  • January 17 – 65
  • January 16 – 103
  • January 15 – 159
  • January 14 – 49
  • January 13 – 52

Source: PHIVOLCS

Taal Volcano activity not likely to trigger The Big One —Phivolcs

Maris Federez   •   January 13, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) believes that Taal Volcano’s explosive eruption will not likely trigger the Big One to happen.

Phivolcs’ Volcano Monitoring and Eruption Prediction Division chief Maria Antonia Bornas said that just because Taal Volcano’s current activity causes earthquakes, and is very near Metro Manila, do not mean these should be a reason for concern as it may not cause movement in the West Valley Fault.

Bornas also said there are no studies that support the possibility that the volcanic eruption can affect the movement of tectonic plates, including fault lines, such as the West Valley Fault.

“Marami rin pong hindi naniniwala na pwedeng mangyari yun for the simple reason na ang fault po, yung tectonic earthquakes is shallow. Nasa crust po yan e. nasa crust po ng mundo. Samantalanag yung pinag mumulan po ng magma ay nasa mantle – mantle po nasa ilalim pa po ng crust,” Bornas said. —(with details from Vincent Arboleda) /mbmf

Palace suspends gov’t work, classes in Metro Manila due to Tisoy

Robie de Guzman   •   December 3, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang suspended work in government offices and classes in Metro Manila on Tuesday, Dec. 3 amid the continuing inclement weather brought about by Typhoon ‘Tisoy’ (international name: Kammuri).

Under Memorandum Circular No. 73 signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, the suspension of government work and classes in all levels was declared effective at 12 noon.

“Upon the recommendation of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), and in view of the continuing inclement weather brought about by Typhoon Tisoy, work in government offices and classes in schools (public and private) at all levels in Metro Manila, are hereby suspended effective 12:00 noon today, 03 December 2019,” the memorandum read.

“However, those agencies whose functions involve the delivery of basic and health services, preparedness/response to disasters and calamities, and/or the performance of other vital services shall continue with their operations and render the necessary services,” it added.

Meanwhile, the suspension of work for private companies and offices will be left to be discretion of their management, the Palace said.

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