USAID and Colombian firefighters join rescue efforts in quake-stricken Mexico

admin   •   September 22, 2017   •   2587

Members of a Colombian crew loading a plane with equipment and aid for Mexico (from Reuters video)

Rescue workers working against the odds in Mexico City on Thursday received reinforcements from USAID amidst a rising death toll and dwindling hope of finding people alive more than 48 hours after a deadly quake.

Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto reported that there could still be people alive in 10 collapsed buildings in Mexico City.

Concentrating efforts on these areas, 67 U.S. search and rescue experts and five dogs will work alongside local rescue crews.

Colombia is also sending 31 individuals and tons of technical equipment that will be dispersed in quake-stricken areas in Mexico City, Puebla and Morelos.

“For all the women firefighters from Bogota and in the name of the unity, this group is ready to move forward and to do good work. We’ve been training for a long time. It’s been almost ten years that we’ve been getting ready for these kinds of emergencies,” said Cabo Yadira Piamonte, a Colombian firefighter.

This was Mexico’s deadliest earthquake in 32 years, with the death toll currently standing at 233. Parts of Mexico City, home to some 20 million people, are built on an ancient lake bed that trembles easily in a quake. — Reuters


Death toll reaches 5 in Mindanao quake

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 17, 2019

An earthquake-damaged house in Labidangan, Upper Bala, Magsaysay, Davao del Sur. (Photo: Igie Rezano Laoc Estomo)

The death toll from the 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Tulunan, North Cotabato on Wednesday (October 16), has reached five while 53 were injured.

Based on the latest situational report of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), three casualties were from Davao del Sur, one was from Cotabato and another one was from Maguindanao.

READ: At least 4 dead in 6.3 magnitude quake in Mindanao

Meanwhile, 53 were injured during the quake and a total of 85 infrastructure in Regions XI and XII sustained damage.—AAC

Mindanao quake aftermath

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 17, 2019

A drone photo of a burning mall ignited caused by a magnitude 6.4 earthquake in General Santos City, Philippines, 16 October 2019. According to local reports, several people were injured after the magnitude 6.4 earthquake struck the southern Philippines. EPA-EFE/AJ RESANE

Fear still lingers in the eyes of Arnold Awag, a father and a resident of Sitio Agco in Kidapawan City.

Arnold was preparing his kids for bedtime when the 6.3 magnitude earthquake rocked several parts of Mindanao on Wednesday (October 16).

Arnold recalled that it was like being swayed by the earth in a giant swing they never wished to be on. He could still hear the fearful cries of his children.

Sitio Agco is located in an area that is prone to landslides. Arnold’s home is at the foot of Mt. Apo, the highest mountain in the Philippines.

“Itinago ko ang mga bata sa ilalim ng mesa para hindi sila tamaan ng hollow block. Iyak sila ng iyak kagabi. Parang umiikot at dinuduyan kami kagabi (I hid the kids under the table to keep them safe from falling hollow blocks. They were crying a lot last night),” he said.

Their home was damaged due to the strong quake but his family is safe. They were among the 400 residents in Sitio Agco who were evacuated due to the possible threat of a landslide.

READ: At least 4 dead in 6.3 magnitude quake in Mindanao

Marilou Miyashiro, another resident, said she might have heard a landslide when the earthquake happened.

“Nang lumindol lumabas kami, tumilapon iyong anak ko. Naglaglagan iyong aming mga gamit hangang namaay ang ilaw. Naglabasan kami, naririnig ko parang nagkaroon ng landslide (During the earthquake, my children got thrown off and our belongings fell until the lights went out. We went outside and it seemed like we heard a landslide),” she said.

At present, the Kidapawan City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office is inspecting the landslide-prone areas.—AAC (with reports from Janice Ingente)

Duterte orders gov’t agencies to respond to quake-affected residents in Mindanao

Marje Pelayo   •   October 17, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte expressed sympathy to those who were affected by the earthquake in several parts of Mindanao, according to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.

In a statement, Panelo said the administration is asking the public to refrain from spreading disinformation which may cause undue alarm, panic, and stress to many.

In view of possible aftershocks, the Palace asks the public to remain calm and vigilant.

Panelo also gave the assurance that the national government, through the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), is closely monitoring the situation and that the President has already ordered concerned agencies to act appropriately in assisting those who were affected.

“The Office of the President has already tasked all concerned agencies of the government to mobilize, respond and provide immediate assistance to those in need, as well as to study plans on how to rehabilitate the damaged areas,” Panelo concluded. MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)


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