State of calamity declared in Bohol | Inquirer News

State of calamity declared in Bohol

/ 03:48 PM October 15, 2013

Residents walk along a damaged road in Bohol. AP

MANILA, Philippines – The province of Bohol was declared under state of calamity on Tuesday afternoon in the wake of a destructive earthquake, a local official said.

Bohol Governor Edgar Chatto told by phone that the state of calamity was declared after a special session of the provincial board.


In Bohol province alone, he said that at least 25 persons were killed from the earthquake as of 1p.m.


There were also 104 persons injured, adding that casualties might continue to rise.

The town of Maribojoc was also inaccessible, as all roads were impassable because of damaged bridges and roads.

Several churches were also damaged, including two of its century-old churches Baclayon and Loboc.

The Loboc Church is also known for the Loboc Children’s choir, an award-winning school children’s choir that performs in the Philippines and abroad.

“We are consulting the National Historical Institute, as well as the church leaders. But right now our priority is looking after the safety of the people,” Chatto said.

The earthquake also shut down power lines in the province.


Bohol also continued to experience aftershocks hours after the earthquake past 8 a.m., and authorities advised people to stay calm.

It was first built in the 1500s by Spanish colonisers, although its current stone structure dates back to the 1700s.

Aside from its beaches, Bohol is famous for its more than 1,000 small limestone “Chocolate Hills” that turn brown during the dry season.

One of the main tourist venues there, the Chocolate Hills Complex, was severely damaged and may be beyond repair, according to Delapan Ingleterra, head of a local tourist police unit.

Tuesday’s quake was followed by at least four aftershocks measuring more than 5.0 in magnitude.

The epicentre was 629 kilometres from Manila.

The Philippines lies on the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire, a chain of islands that are prone to quakes and volcanic eruptions.

More than 100 people were left dead or missing in February last year after an earthquake struck on Negros island, about 100 kilometres from the epicentre of Tuesday’s quake.

The deadliest recorded natural disaster in the Philippines occurred in 1976, when a tsunami triggered by a magnitude 7.9 earthquake devastated the Moro Gulf on the southern island of Mindanao.

Between 5,000 and 8,000 people were killed, according to official estimates. With a report from Agence France Presse

Originally posted at 3:48 p.m.

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TAGS: Bohol earthquake, Cebu, News, Regions

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