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Strong quake rocks Luzon

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Monday, April 22nd, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — A strong earthquake rocked parts of Luzon on Monday, April 22.

In a bulletin, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said a magnitude 5.7 earthquake was recorded at 5:11 p.m.

The quake has a depth of 21 kilometers and its epicenter was located in Castillejos, Zambales.

The following intensities were felt in these areas:

Intensity V:

  • San Felipe, Zambales
  • Malabon
  • Quezon City

Intensity IV

  • Makati
  • Pasig
  • Marikina
  • Magalang, Pampanga

Intensity III

  • Batangas area
  • Dasmariñas, Cavite | via @phivolcs_dost

Phivolcs warned that aftershocks and damage are expected.

Due to the strong quake, the management of the Light Rail Transit line 2 (LRT-2) suspended its train operations on Monday at around 5:18 p.m.

LRT-2 Spokesperson Hernando Cabrera wrote on his twitter account that “All stations are closed for passenger entry, pending inspection and assessment of all facilities and systems due to earthquake.”

In view of the earthquake felt in Metro Manila and nearby provinces, the Philippine National Police (PNP) asked the public to remain calm and follow the drill and procedures on earthquake if necessary.

The PNP also assured readiness in responding for any call for help.

“We assure our people that the PNP will stay to provide security, remain alert, and ready to respond for any call for help,” said PNP Spokesperson COL. Bernard Banac. — Robie de Guzman

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Know possible hazards in your area with web app ‘Hazard Hunter’

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Tuesday, July 16th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Want to know potential hazards within your area?

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) on Tuesday (July 16) launched a web application dubbed as ‘Hazard Hunter’ which provides the public with information on the possible dangers that may happen in a specific area like earthquake, flood or even volcanic eruption.

‘Hazard Hunter’ is a web-based application that can be accessed on desktop, laptop or in smart phones.

To access, just load https://hazardhunter.georisk.gov.ph/ on your web browser.

A welcome message will lead you to the Hazard Hunter official page.

You will be asked to proceed until you see the full map of the Philippines.

Click on the menu bar then several options on the type of hazards that may be present in your area will appear – seismic for earthquakes, volcanic for volcanoes and hydro-meteorological for flood and storm-related hazards.

Click on the type of hazard then select an area by pointing the cursor to the place of inquiry on the map.

Double click on the area of choice.

The system will immediately load the results that will flash on the right side of the screen.

For instance, Baseco compound in Manila has a population of about 60,000 people.

Based on the app’s reading, Baseco is about 12 kilometers away from the West Valley Fault.

Residents in Baseco may feel ground shaking of up to intensity 8 once the West Valley Fault moves in an event called the Big One.

The area is prone to liquefaction and could suffer from up to four-meter-high tsunami as it is near Manila Bay.

Based on the app, Baseco is less likely to be affected if ever the nearest active volcano, Mount Taal in Batangas, erupts.

Taal Lake is about 58 kilometers away from Baseco.

Baseco is a flood-prone area and floodwater can go as high as two meters and can take up to three days to subside.

During the onset of a severe tropical cyclone, the area could suffer from storm surge as high as 4 meters.

But there is no possibility of a landslide in the area.

The app also has detailed recommendations or suggestions for a plan of action during a specific hazard.

Science and Technology Undersecretary and PHIVOLCS OIC Renato Solidum believes ‘Hazard Hunter’ will enable the public to prepare and plan ahead of a natural disaster.

Government agencies will also be guided for appropriate actions to be taken to minimize or prevent the loss of lives and damage to properties.

“Hindi naman masama na may hazards diyan. What is important is that the hazard is recognized so that the developer can develop approaches to lessen the impact, to mitigate the possible impact,” Solidum noted.

Solidum said even his own house sits on a location that is hazard-prone but recognizing the dangers enabled him to plan for his and his family’s protection.

“Tinaasan ko yung bahay. Ginawa kong three floors para hindi ako mamatay sa baha (What I did was I elevated my house. I made it into three floors to keep me safe from the flood),” he said.

“Inayos ko yung foundation ng building para sa shaking ng liquefaction. So mga ganung klaseng real life application magagamit (ang Hazard Hunter) (I aligned the foundation of the building in case of shaking during liquefaction. During those real-life applications, [Hazard Hunter] can be useful),” he added.

Before the end of the year, PHIVOLCS plans to launch the mobile version of the website. – with details from Rey Pelayo

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5.5 magnitude quake jolts Surigao del Sur

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Saturday, July 13th, 2019

A magnitude 5.5 earthquake jolted Surigao del Sur and its neighboring provinces early morning Saturday, July 13.

According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), the earthquake, recorded at 4:42 a.m., was tectonic in origin and had a depth of 5 kilometers.

The epicenter was located at 8 kilometers Northwest of Cortes town.

Intensity IV was recorded in Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental;
Intensity II in Cebu City and Borongan City; and Intensity I – Bislig City and Cagayan de Oro City.

Authorities are still searching thru the affected areas to estimate the total damage and casualties brought by the quake.

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Californians remain alert for earthquakes after two major ones in two days

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Tuesday, July 9th, 2019

Courtesy: Reuters

Californians near the epicenter of Friday night’s 7.1-magnitude earthquake are staying cautious about more quakes as aftershocks continued in the following two days.

Friday’s earthquake was the largest to occur in California in nearly 20 years. This comes as the golden state had seen a 6.4-magnitude one on Thursday.

At the epicenter of the 7.1-magnitude earthquake — Searles Valley, cracks can be seen on surface of freeways. Underground water pipes were also damaged. In Trona, a nearby town with a population of 2,000 to 3,000, houses and buildings were damaged on different level.

The earthquake caused power outages and water cuts, which were still not fully recovered in some places after two days.

An earthquake shelter was established in the city of Ridgecrest 40 kilometers from Trona following the first earthquake.

Although Californians are no strangers to earthquakes, many are still anxious over the two strong shakes and choose to sleep in the shelter or inside their own vehicles at night.

“So this shelter has been set up by the America Red Cross of our partners that are helping us out here. It’s a evacuation shelter for individuals who have been displaced related to the earthquake that happened here in this area. We are providing food, shelter and information assistance and whatever we can provide for the community to help them to get through the current situation,” said Roy Vargas, leader of the shelter.

Vargas said although people are stressed, they are happy because the situation is getting better.

“Well, I think the general mood, of course, everyone is stressed, because of the situation that have happened. But overall, I think people are about is joy; they are happy because they are working towards getting better,” said Vargas.

Local police department warned residents to stay vigilant and advised every household to store three days of rations and batteries for flashlights in case of more severe quakes and relief supplies may take time to arrive. (REUTERS)

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