A 6.5-magnitude quake struck Leyte province on Thursday afternoon, according to the state-run Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Philvolcs), causing a three-story building to collapse and killing one person.
Vice Mayor Elmer Codilla of Kananga town said that based on initial reports, 10 other people were injured when the building collapsed, mostly those who were in the grocery that was on the ground floor.
Aside from the grocery, the commercial building in Kananga had a boutique and a hardware store.
Kananga Mayor Rowena Codilla said in a radio interview a 42-year-old male fatality was pulled out by rescuers from the collapsed structure.
In an advisory, Philvolcs said the quake hit eight kilometers southwest of Jaro town at about 4 p.m. on Thursday. It was tectonic in origin, caused by the movement of the 1,200-kilometer Philippine fault zone.
The agency did not raise a tsunami warning as the earthquake occurred inland.
Intensity 5 was felt in Tacloban City; Palo town, also in Leyte; and in Cebu City.
Intensity 4 was felt in Tolosa, Leyte; Sagay City, Negros Occidental; Burgos, Surigao del Norte; and in Cagdianao, Dinagat Islands.
Intesity 3 was felt in Bogo City, Cebu; Calatrava, Negros Occidental; Libjo, San Jose. Intensity 1 was felt in Roxas City and La Carlota in Negros Occidental.
Jaro was again hit by a 3.8-magnitude aftershock at 4:13 p.m. and another 4.3-magnitude aftershock at 5:55 p.m. on Thursday.
Phivolcs said damage was reported after the temblor and power outages occurred in the towns of Tacloban and Palo, and a total blackout in San Vicente. The province of Bohol was also hit by a massive power interruption.
Power was cut off in Leyte as the Malitbog Geothermal Power Station, located in Kananga town, automatically shuts down during a quake, said Leyte Gov. Leopoldo Dominico Petilla.
Kananga Mayor Codilla said authorities recorded a “6-yard damage” in the power plant. The power plant is the
largest geothermal energy producer in the country and provides most of the power supply for the Visayas.
Phivolcs Director Renato Solidum noted that the epicenter was not in a highly urbanized area.
Petilla said in a radio interview that although the quake hit the mountain area between Canhadugan and Ormoc City, he still received reports that a number of buildings were damaged.
Cracks were also seen on the roads in Valencia, Ormoc City, although this information was still being verified, he said.
Malacañang, in a statement, urged residents of affected areas to “stay calm and yet remain alert and vigilant for aftershocks as we assure them of immediate assistance by the government.”
In Bukidnon, President Rodrigo Duterte told reporters: “We are doing everything we can.”
with FRANCIS EARL A. CUETO, DEMPSEY REYES AND CATHERINE S. VALENTE