Philippines: 7.1 magnitude earthquake rocks Luzon island for 30 seconds
A violent 7.1-magnitude earthquake slammed the Philippine islands of Luzon on Wednesday, devastating a hospital and residences in a northern region and sending significant vibrations through the capital, Manila, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS). According to officials, a hospital in Abra state was vacated after it partially collapsed as a result of the quake lasting around 30 seconds. No injuries were reported.
- The Philippines is located in the Pacific Ocean near the 'Ring of Fire' earthquake-prone zone.
- According to the USGS, the epicenter of the earthquake was around 11 kilometers east-southeast of Dolores and struck at a shallow depth of 10 kilometers.
- A 7.1 earthquake on the Richter scale is considered a "very strong" earthquake, having the potential to severely destroy life and property.
"The focus of attention is on Abra and nearby provinces. This is a major earthquake. We expect strong aftershocks," the director of the state seismology agency, Renato Solidum, reportedly stated. Eric Singson, a lawmaker from the northern province of Ilocos Sur, reportedly told the local DZMM radio station that the tremor was felt powerfully and people rushed to save themselves.
"We are still experiencing aftershocks. We've received reports of damage to houses. But so far, no casualties," stated Mayor Rovelyn Villamor in Abra province's Lagangilang. "We don't have a power supply because that's automatically cut off due to danger," Villamor reportedly told DZRH radio. The Abra province public information office uploaded photos on Facebook of severely damaged buildings, with massive fractures in the walls.
The tremor was felt in Manila as well, and the city's metro rail system was shut down during rush hour as a result of the earthquake, according to the transport ministry. As per media reports, the capital's senate building was also evacuated.