WESTERN VISAYAS ROCKED BY THREE QUAKES
PATIENTS of the Don Pedro Trono Memorial District Hospital in Guimbal, Iloilo are evacuated from the their wards after the 4.8-magnitude quake Monday morning. (Photos courtesy of Francis Basco)
Parts of Western Visayas, including Negros Occidental were rocked by three earthquakes, causing people to evacuate buildings and suspending classes in some parts of the region morning of Nov. 5, 2018.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said the initial tremor with a magnitude of 4.7 was reported at around 7:49 a.m.
The initial quakes was epicentered eight kilometers east of San Jose Antique, with Intensity III felt in Iloilo City.
A minute later, a second quake struck two kilometers north of Sibunag, Guimaras with a magnitude of 4.0 with Intensity IV felt in Iloilo City.
The third quake measuring a magnitude of 4.8 then struck at 10:54 a.m. and was epicentered at 12 kilometers northwest of Guimbal, Iloilo.
Intensity IV was again felt in Iloilo City, along with San Jose de Buenavista in Antique; Intensity III in Roxas City, Capiz and Belison, Antique; and Intensity II was reported in Cadiz City, Negros Occidental, and Cebu City.
In Guimbal, patients and employees of the district hospital in the town were evacuated during the third temblor. Inspections on the hospitals later showed cracks in the operating and delivery rooms.
Classes were suspended in all levels both in public and private schools in Iloilo City following a series of earthquakes that jolted three provinces in Western Visayas on Monday, Nov. 5, 2018.
Iloilo City Mayor Jose Espinosa III announced the suspension of classes at past 11:00 in the morning.
In a Facebook page of the Iloilo City Government, Espinosa said, “ensure safety of everyone in Iloilo City because of the earthquake, classes are suspended in all levels both public and private schools.
Iloilo City Hall will also be closed for the rest of the day.
However, “I leave it upon the discretion of private companies and national govt agencies to declare suspension of work,” Espinosa added.
At least two schools in Guimbal were partially damaged. Portions of the beam and ceiling at kindergarten classroom in Barangay Igcocolo gave following the shake.
There was also reported damage of a classroom at Cabasi-Sta. Rosa Elementary School.
In Bacolod City construction workers of the Ayala Capitol Mall were ordered to evacuate for their safety, along with employees at the Commission on Elections office in San Juan Street.
Work in Bacolod was later resumed after an all clear was given.
In Iloilo City, patients at the QualiMed Hospital in Mandurriao District and students at the Iloilo Science and Technology University in the town of Barotac Nuevo were also forced to get out of the buildings due to the strong tremor.
The mass evacuation of buildings in Iloilo City also created traffic jams in some parts of the city.
Phivolcs, meanwhile, stated they are not expecting any aftershocks from the three strong earthquakes, although as of press time they have recorded six other minor tremors with a magnitude ranging from 1.8 to 2.5, all of which were epicentered at the town of Leon, Iloilo.