Earthquake Swarm Damages Buildings In The Philippines

Several earthquakes that struck parts of North Cotabato on Saturday, September 20 – the highest recorded at magnitude 5 – damaged 82 houses and a church, and caused minor injuries on a boy, local authorities said.

Cynthia Ortega, Provincial Risk Reduction and Management Council action officer of North Cotabato, said that Barangay Luayon in Makilala town was the most badly hit, with 82 houses damaged by the tremor, 15 of which were destroyed.

A church was also reportedly damaged by the earthquake. Ortega also said a boy suffered “minor bruises” from falling debris and hollow blocks from his own home, apparently one of those badly damaged by the tremor.

Several hours before a magnitude 5 earthquake struck 14 kilometers southwest of Kidapawan City in the province, a magnitude 4.6 earthquake of tremor was recorded 6 km southeast of Makilala town at 5:59 am. Several more earthquakes were recorded in the province throughout the afternoon but only a few recorded felt intensities.

Barangay Luayon in Makilala town was celebrating its 62nd founding anniversary on Saturday when the quake happened. Governor Emmylou Mendoza, who was in Barangay Luayon as a guest speaker at the village’s anniversary ceremony, personally witnessed the tremor.

“I was there when the jolting happened. People had to stop for a while during the program when the tremors were felt, and then continued as soon as the movements stopped.

But despite the earthquake the activities [continued],” Mendoza said. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said that at 12:26 pm Saturday, a magnitude 5.0 earthquake struck 14 km southwest of Kidapawan City. Intensity 4 was felt in Kidapawan City and Makilala, while Intensity 3 was felt in M’lang and Tulunan towns. Intensity 2 was felt in Matalam and Antipas towns. Phivolcs said aftershocks were expected in some areas in North Cotabato.

As of posting, Philvolcs recorded a total of 14 tremors in North Cotabato, the last at 3:43 pm, all but one in Kidapawan. Of this number, only 4 reported felt intensities.


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