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7.2 Magnitude Earthquake Trembles Central Visayas

A 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck the provinces of Bohol, Cebu, Siquijor, and Negros Oriental at exactly 8:12 a.m. of Tuesday, October 15.


The epicenter was seen 2 kilometers southeast of Carmen town in Bohol province.


A total of 3,406,227 people which comprise of 671,957 families in the three Central Visayas provinces have been affected by the earthquake according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).


The death toll is now at 158, but is still expected to rise as rescuers and relief workers reach some of the isolated towns hardest hit by the disaster.


From the total, there were 146 casualties in Bohol, 11 in Cebu, and one in Siquijor.


The injured people now count to 374 with 188 in Bohol, 182 in Cebu, 3 in Siquijor and one in Negros, while 21 people are still missing.


Offices and schools were closed for a national holiday that day where the country celebrated the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha—which may have saved lives.


Bohol and Cebu have declared a state calamity wherein the estimated cost of the damaged roads, bridges and flood control infrastructure is now at P75.15 million in both provinces. P57.5 million is the cost of damage in Bohol, while P17.15 million in Cebu.


Damaged houses already rose to 18,625 across Bohol and Cebu. Meanwhile, centuries-old churches in both provinces have been badly damaged and are now left in rubbles.


According to Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) Director Renato Solidum, the earthquake was the strongest felt in Visayas and Mindanao in the last 23 years, releasing energy equivalent to “32 Hiroshima bombs”—the nuclear bomb dropped over Hiroshima, Japan, on Aug. 6, 1945, packed power equal to 20,000 tons of TNT.


Located along the Pacific Ring of Fire, the source of 90 percent of the world’s earthquakes, the Philippines has experienced a number of disturbing tremors.


Aftershocks shake the region wherein Phivolcs have recorded a total of 1,213 aftershocks.

Corabelle is the Bayanihan's Phillippine News Correspondent.