Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) allayed fears about the magnitude 6 earthquake that rocked Batanes on Friday night, noting such tremor isn’t destructive despite being a ‘strong’ one. Dr. Renato Solidum, Philvolcs chief, said that quake occurred at a depth of 183 km and explained it is deep “so there’s no expected damage.” He previously noted the shallower an earthquake is, the more damage to structures that causes. Earthquakes of magnitude 6 to 7 are accompanied by local damage near respective epicenters, noted Phivolcs. Earlier, Phivolcs reported damage from the lesser magnitude 5.6 earthquake that rocked Bohol province on May 27, 1996. Such tremor occurred at a depth of only four km from the surface, Phivolcs noted. Phivolcs reported Friday’s earthquake in Batanes is of tectonic origin and struck 7:33 p.m. at 42 km south 68° east of the province’s Uyugan municipality. Across Batanes, the quake was felt at Intensity IV in Uyugan, Intensity III in Ivana and Sabtang, Intensity II in Basco and Mahatao as well as Intensity I in Itbayat. Under Phivolcs’ earthquake intensity scale, intensities IV, III, II and I are ‘moderately strong,’ ‘weak,’ ‘slightly felt’ and ‘scarcely perceptible,’ respectively.The quake was also felt at Intensity III in Ilocos Norte province’s Laoag City and Intensity II in Burgos, Ilocos Sur province. Solidum said aftershock from the tremor was less than magnitude 3 so people no longer felt it.



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