UPDATE: 5.3 quake sends people fleeing buildings, halts trains and classes
First posted at 4:56 p.m.
MANILA, Philippines — A 5.3 magnitude earthquake struck off Polillo Island in Quezon and shook a large swath of Luzon, sending panicked people fleeing from buildings in Metro Manila.
Train services were halted for more than two hours in the nation’s capital region as authorities made safety checks of facilities. Some evening classes were suspended.
There were no immediate reports of damage or injury from the tremor that centered 39 kilometers northeast of Burdeos on Polillo Island at 4:28 p.m.
“This is a moderate-sized earthquake and we don’t expect damage so far based on the intensity reports that we received,” Renato Solidum, director of the nation’s seismology institute, told CNN Philippines.
Though there did not appear to be any destruction the intense shaking at the epicenter rattled locals.
“Everyone rushed out of the buildings. We were terrified,” Rezil Golbin, a civilian employee at the police office on Polillo Island told Agence France-Presse.
In the metropolis, office workers, some wearing hard hats, poured out of buildings and guests moved out of hotels, and several shoppers in a supermarket yelled in panic as the ground shook.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) initially placed the magnitude at 5.5.
The quake of tectonic origin had a depth of 62 kilometers.
The earthquake was felt in the following areas:
- Intensity V- Burdeos and Infanta, Quezon; Los Baños and Pakil, Laguna;
- Intensity IV – Jose Panganiban, Camarines Norte; Quezon City; Marikina City; Sta. Cruz,
- Laguna;Alabat and Gen. Nakar, Quezon;
- Intensity III – Guinayangan, Quezon; Muntinlupa City; Manila City; San Jose Del Monte,
- Bulacan;Bacoor, Cavite; Maddela, Quirino; San Mateo, Rizal; Baler, Aurora; Lucena City
- Intensity II- Dingalan, Aurora; Mandaluyong City; Apalit, Pampanga; Taguig City; Lucban, Quezon
- Intensity I- San Isidro, Nueva Ecija; Gapan City; Meycauayan, Bulacan
- Intensity V – Polilio, Quezon
- Intensity IV – Jose Panganiban, Camarines Norte; Quezon City; Alabat and Mauban, Quezon
- Intensity III – Guinayangan, Quezon; Marikina City; Baler, Aurora; Tagaytay City; Quezon City;
- Navotas City
- Intensity II – Mulanay, Lucban and Gumaca, Quezon; Malolos and San Ildefonso, Bulacan;
- Guagua, Pampanga; Las Pinas City; Pasig City; San Juan City;
- Caloocan City; Malabon City; Muntinlupa City; Calumpit, Bulacan
- Intensity I – Talisay, Batangas; Olongapo City; San Jose, Nueva Ecija
- Phivolcs warned that aftershocks may be expected from the earthquake.
The Philippines is in the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, an arc of intense seismic activity that stretches from quake-prone Japan through Southeast Asia and across the Pacific basin. With reports from AFP, AP /kga/dam
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