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Phivolcs monitoring possible magnitude 8 tremor after quake swarm off Surigao del Norte

We have to be prepared always, says Phivolcs director
/ 12:31 PM April 29, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said it continues to monitor a possible magnitude 8 earthquake following the more than 600 aftershocks connected to a magnitude 5.5 tremor that struck the coast off Surigao del Norte last week.

READ: Series of earthquakes hit General Luna, Surigao del Norte

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“Kasi ‘pag mga ganyang kumpol-kumpol na lindol, although may 5.5, marami mga magnitude 5 or 4, parang tinatawag naming earthquake swarm ‘yan at dalawa ang possible diyan eh, unang-una, ganyan lang yan na earthquake swarm—nangyari ‘yan diyan sa ibang bahagi ng Philippine trench, off shore din ng Surigao del Norte, nung early this year, nagkaroon ng magnitude 6-something diyan sa katapusan ng activity—or minsan ay ganyan lang, ganyan lang kaliit,” Phivolcs Director Renato Solidum said in an interview with Radyo Inquirer on Monday.

“Pero hindi natin inaalis na, kasi ang mga scenario natin diyan mga magnitude 8, na kung ganyan ang mangyayari na malakas eh yung tsunami naman ang ating babantayan,” he added.

However, Solidum noted that in Phivolcs’ previous monitoring of the area, they have yet to record a strong tremor following an earthquake swarm.

“Ang isa naming tinitignan ay kung nagdi-decrease ba yung bilang at pahina na, usually wala nang malaki diyan. Pero hindi natin masasabi na ganun talaga at kailangang bantayan,” he said.

“So far sa history ng ating pagbabantay in the past several years, maraming swarm diyan parati, wala namang malaking nangyari, pero hindi talaga natin pwedeng tanggalin yung ganung scenario at kailangan pa rin bantayan,” he added.

Solidum added that while Phivolcs has not yet seen a quake pattern that may lead to a magnitude 8 tremor, they continue to monitor the said activity.

“Although di natin masasabi kung talagang ito’y dederetso sa ganun, sana hindi, ang kadalasan ay tumitigil lang na ganyan lang pero we don’t know so we have to be prepared always,” he said.

“Ang binabantayan po namin kung may pattern, mahirap magsabi na may pattern sa ngayon, ang pattern po na dumadami at lumalakas, may ibig sabihin ‘yon baka tumuloy sa malaki, eh wala pa kaming nakikita na pattern; pero kahit wala pong pattern, minsan sumusulpot yung malaki,” he added.

The Phivolcs director noted that they have so far recorded 673 aftershocks as of 4 a.m. on Monday following the 5.5 magnitude tremor plotted off the coast of Surigao del Norte last Friday.

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Solidum likewise reminded the public to be prepared in the event of a strong earthquake and advised coastal communities to review their coastal preparedness for hazards like tsunamis.

“Dapat magingat lang no, kung sakaling may malakas na lindol dapat alam na alam na nila yung mga procedure, in fact in the past years, nagcoordinate kami sa DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) na manguna sila sa paghahanda, sa tinatawag naming Eastern seaboard o mga coastlines na nasa harap ng Pacific Ocean na ihanda sila sa tsunami,” he said.

“Yung ibang coastlines naman sa ibang lugar sa Pilipinas, kailangan din maghanda sa tsunami,” he added. /je

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TAGS: Aftershock, monitor, Phivolcs, Quake, Surigao del Norte
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