Strong quake rattles Baguio

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Tuesday, February 5, 2013


BAGUIO CITY -- Classes in several schools in this city were suspended Monday following a 4.5 magnitude earthquake that struck Baguio and nearby areas Monday afternoon.

The tremor, which was tectonic in origin, was felt at intensity 5 in the entire city, sending people to panic.

On social media, netizens also reacted to the quake, with some of the users, especially those residing in Baguio, sharing what they experienced when the tremor struck at 3:16 p.m.

Jamila Meamo [@jameamo] on Twitter said: “We just had an earthquake here in Baguio again. The worst I ever had so far, the entire house was shaking. Literally.”

Another user, @ShamSeanTot, posted: “That ‘Baguio’ earthquake made me faint a while ago. It also made a creak on the new building!! waaaaahh! #CantGetOver”

Drew Latina Velasquez [@lionquez] said: “OMG! That was a strong earthquake here in Baguio! Niyanig kami as in!!!”

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) considered an earthquake felt at intensity 5 as strong, being felt by most people indoors and outdoors.

“Many sleeping people awakened. Some are frightened; some run outdoors. Strong shaking and rocking are felt throughout the building. Hanging objects swing violently. Dining utensils clatter and clink; some are broken. Small, light and unstable objects may fall or overturn. Liquids spill from filled open containers. Standing vehicles rock noticeably. Shaking of leaves and twigs of trees is noticeable,” the Phivolcs said in describing Intensity 5.

It said the quake’s epicenter was located at 13 kilometers south, 33 degrees east of Baguio City.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) also located the epicenter at seven kilometers north of Labayug, 18 kilometers south southwest of Itogon in Benguet, and 20 kilometers north northwest of Guiset East.

The same earthquake was felt at intensity 2 in Agoo and San Fernando City, both in La Union province.

Magnitude-4.5 quake hits Baguio City
BAGUIO. Students from the University of Baguio calmly await word from the administration about what to do next after they vacated their buildings following a magnitude-4.5 earthquake that hit the city Monday. (JJ Landingin)

The Phivolcs said no damages were initially reported and no aftershocks are expected.

Several schools in this city, however, took no chances, as they suspended classes in all levels Monday after the incident.

Students from the University of Baguio were seen Monday gathering outside their school buildings, waiting a word from the administration about what to do next after vacating their classrooms. The students were later told to go home.

Last Sunday, Phivolcs also recorded three other earthquakes: Magnitude 3.5 in Governor Generoso, Davao Oriental at 12 p.m.; magnitude 4 in General Luna, Surigao del Norte at 9:16 a.m.; and magnitude 4 in Looc, Occidental Mindoro at 7:40 a.m.

After Monday’s quake, SN Aboitiz Power-Benguet and Hedcor Inc. reassured residents in low-lying areas that their dams were not affected by the earthquake.

Snap-Benguet spokesman Mike Hosillos said the Ambuklao and Binga hydroelectric power plants were not affected and operations are normal. The same is true with Hedcor’s plants In La Trinidad and Itogon. (With Ma. Elena Catajan/Sun.Star Baguio/Sunnex)

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on February 05, 2013.

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