Quake damages 4,000 structures
KIDAPAWAN CITY, Cotabato, Philippines — More than 4,000 houses and buildings in Cotabato and Davao del Sur provinces were damaged by Wednesday’s 6.3-magnitude quake.
Makilala is one of the three areas in North Cotabato hardest hit by the tremor. The two others were Kidapawan City and Tulunan, identified by Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology as the epicenter.
About 2,250 residential homes and government buildings were damaged by the quake in Makilala.
Makilala Mayor Armando Quibod said at least 83,000 people in 38 villages have been affected by the quake, the strongest experienced in the town, so far.
Makilala, which sits beside the country’s highest peak, Mt. Apo, has been placed under state of calamity.
In the adjacent town of Tulunan, officials reported that more than 500 homes were partially and totally damaged by the earthquake.
The quake’s epicenter was traced 22 kilometers south of Tulunan.
Tulunan Vice Mayor Maureen Ann Villamor said that among the damaged government buildings was the New Caridad High School.
The damaged two-story school building would have to be demolished, Villamor said.
There was no declaration of calamity for Tulunan since the town had already been placed under state of calamity in March this year due to drought.
A local government is only allowed to declare a state of calamity once every year.
In Kidapawan City, Psalmer Bernalte, city disaster management officer, said residents from Barangay Ilomavis who were evacuated on Thursday were allowed to return home on Saturday morning after the village was cleared of fallen rocks.
Barangay Ilomavis, situated at the slope of Mt. Apo and host to a geothermal power plant, experienced rockfall after the quake.
“All hospitals are safe, there were minor cracks but, as a whole, the buildings are structurally sound,” Bernalte said.
About 70 patients opted to stay at the Kidapawan City gymnasium and refused to return to the Kidapawan Doctors Hospital just across the city hall. They were eventually persuaded to transfer to the hospital on Saturday morning.
State of calamity
Regional Director Cezario Joel Espejo of the Department of Social Welfare and Development said social workers distributed this weekend collapsible water containers and tents to affected residents.
In Magsaysay, Davao del Sur, the town was placed under a state of calamity due to severe damage.
Magsaysay’s disaster risk reduction and management council pegged the damage at P200 million, affecting 2,021 households and displacing close to a thousand people.
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