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Magnitude 6.8 quake hits Davao Occidental

A magnitude 6.8 earthquake hit Davao Occidental on Friday, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) reported.

It said the quake was tectonic in origin and was felt at 4:14 p.m.

PHIVOLCS initially put the earthquake's magnitude at 7.2.

"As we received more information, from our seismic stations we recalculated 'yung magnitude and naging 6.8," PHIVOLCS Director Teresito Bacolcol told reporters.

The epicenter was located 05.48°N, 125.16°E - 034 km N 88° W of Sarangani Island (Davao Occidental) at a depth of 72 km.

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. directed related government offices to immediately respond and ensure the safety of residents affected by the strong quake that hit Davao Occidental on Friday, according to the Presidential Communications Office (PCO).

“The President has instructed every relevant government agency to promptly take action to ensure the safety and well-being of those affected,” said PCO Secretary Cheloy Garafil. 

Marcos is attending the APEC Leaders' Summit in the United States.

In General Santos City, a video showed some mall-goers hiding under the tables of a restaurant while crying for help amid the 6.8 magnitude quake. The strong tremors caused portions of the mall ceiling to collapse

An individual also reportedly jumped off from the mall's second floor to the ground floor out of fear,  GMA Regional TV One Mindanao’s Abbey Caballero reported on “24 Oras."  He sustained minor injuries.

Meanwhile, students from various schools were rushed to hospitals after they felt nauseous due to the earthquake.

In Matina, Davao City, a part of a crane broke and sent debris falling from a building under construction as a result of the earthquake.

According to Jaycel Villacorye on Super Radyo Davao, there were no reported injuries and casualties from the incident. 

PHIVOLCS reported the intensities in the following areas:

  • Intensity VI - Kiamba, Sarangani; Polomolok, South Cotabato; City of General Santos
  • Intensity V - Pantukan, Davao de Oro; City of Tagum, Davao Del Norte; Jose Abad Santos, Davao Occidental; Alabel, Maasim, and Malungon, Sarangani; Banga, Lake Sebu, Tampakan, and Tupi, South Cotabato; City of Tacurong, Sultan Kudarat 
  • Intensity IV - City of Zamboanga; Magsaysay, Davao del Sur; City of Davao; Banisilan, Kabacan, and City of Kidapawan, Cotabato; Malapatan, Sarangani; City of Koronadal, Norala, and Santo Niño, South Cotabato; Bagumbayan, Kalamansig, Lebak, Lutayan, President Quirino, and Senator Ninoy Aquino, Sultan Kudarat; City of Bislig, and Hinatuan, Surigal del Sur; Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao; City of Cotabato
  • Intensity III - Kalilangan, Bukidnon; Laak, and Nabunturan, Davao de Oro; Aleosan, Antipas, M'lang, Magpet, and Pigkawayan, Cotabato; City of Isabela, Basilan; Jolo, Sulu
  • Intensity II - Don Carlos, and San Fernando, Bukidnon; Maco, and New Bataan, Davao de Oro; Carmen, Cotabato
  • Intensity I - Cabanglasan, Dangcagan, Libona, Malitbog, Manolo Fortich, Maramag, Talakag, and City of Valencia, Bukidnon; Mambajao, Camiguin; Balingasag, and Villanueva, Misamis Oriental 

The instrumental intensities were felt in the following areas:

  • Intensity V - Matanao, Davao del Sur; Jose Abad Santos, Davao Occidental; Maasim, and Malapatan, Sarangani; Banga, Lake Sebu, Polomolok, and Tampakan, South Cotabato 
  • Intensity IV - Magsaysay, Davao del Sur; Davao City; Don Marcelino, Davao Occidental; City of Kidapawan, Cotabato; Kiamba, Sarangani; Norala, and Tantangan, South Cotabato; Bagumbayan, Columbio, Esperanza, Isulan, Kalamansig, Lebak, and President Quirino, Sultan Kudarat 
  • Intensity III - City of Zamboanga; Nabunturan, Davao de Oro; M'lang, Cotabato; Lambayong, Sultan Kudarat
  • Intensity II - Molave, Zamboanga del Sur; City of Malaybalay, Bukidnon; Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte; Balingasag, and Initao, Misamis Oriental; City of Cagayan de Oro, Carmen, and Pikit, Cotabato
  • Intensity I - San Lorenzo, Guimaras; City of Talisay, Cebu; City of Dapitan, Liloy, and Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte; Talakag, Bukidnon; Tubod, Lanao del Norte; Alamada, Cotabato; City of Cabadbaran, Agusan del Norte; City of Bislig, Surigao del Sur

PHIVOLCS said aftershocks and damage should be expected. It added there is no tsunami threat due to the earthquake.

"We issued a tsunami advisory walang tsunami threat. We expect about magnitude 5.8 aftershock," Bacolcol said, adding that aftershocks could last for a few weeks.

According to a report by James Plecis on Super Radyo dzBB, the quake was felt in General Santos City. 

"Yung unang pagyanig siguro mahigit one minute siguro at narinig na lang na mayroong mga bumagsak sa loob ng bahay. Naglabasan din 'yung mga tao at narinig din natin 'yung siren ng ambulance," he said. 

(The first quake lasted for over a minute and I heard something fell inside the house. People came out of their houses and we also heard the siren of the ambulance.)

Meanwhile, PHIVOLCS said it has yet to monitor any casualty due to the earthquake.—Sherylin Untalan/AOL, GMA Integrated News