Philippines: New 6.9 earthquake off Mindanao island

philippines: new 6.9 earthquake off mindanao island

The area is already severely damaged following several other quakes over the weeekend

Another large earthquake struck off the east coast of the Philippines’ Mindanao island early on Monday, amid a series of quakes and aftershocks concentrated around the same area over the weekend.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) said a magnitude 6.9 earthquake hit just before 4 a.m. local time (Sunday, 2000 GMT/UTC), at a depth of roughly 30 kilometers (18 miles), some 72 kilometers off the northeastern coast.

That followed a deadly 7.6 quake late on Saturday and another 6.6 tremor on Sunday in the same area. USGS’ website logged dozens of seismic events, most likely to be designated as aftershocks, in the area over the weekend. They continued later into Monday morning following the latest large tremor.

Severe damage and 2 deaths sustained in earlier quake

Authorities had already reported two deaths and several injuries following Saturday night’s quake, as well as damage to buildings and homes.

Hinatuan police Staff Sergeant Joseph Lambo told news agency AFP that the latest quake sent people in one of the worst-hit towns rushing outside again in case their homes should be damaged.

“They were panicking due to the memory of the previous night’s quake,” he said, before adding that police were still checking for further damage or casualties.

Saturday’s quake had also briefly triggered tsunami warnings in the region but these was later lifted.

Earthquakes are an almost daily occurrence for the Philippines, situated along the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” a large area of intense seismic and volcanic activity. Several people were killed in another 6.7 magnitude quake in mid-November that caused a shopping mall to partially collapse.

msh/jsi (AFP, AP)

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