Phivolcs: 290 aftershocks hit Bohol
MANILA – Close to 290 aftershocks were recorded nine hours after a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit Bohol Tuesday morning, Phivolcs said.
Phivolcs director Renato Solidum said the aftershocks may continue for weeks and months, but noted that its frequency and strength will gradually diminish, comparing the scenario to a moving vehicle coming to a stop.
“’Yung bilang ng lindol paunti ng paunti ‘yan, pero minsan may mga aftershock na minsan linggo na o buwan ang pagitan ay nararamdaman pa,” he said in a press conference.
The strongest aftershock was recorded at a magnitude 4.8 at 12:22 p.m., four hours after the quake.
Solidum advised the public not to panic when aftershocks are felt, saying it is a common occurrence after major earthquakes.
He also said the public should make sure not to return to structures which were already damaged. He said authorities should check the safety of the damaged structures.
“Ang immediate concern ay ang pagi-inspect ng mga gusali na nasira,” he said.
Solidum allayed fears of a tsunami, explaining that the center of the quake hit land and not water.
“Dahil ang lindol ay nasa lupa, ang mga banta sa tsunamis ay wala,” he said.
Tsunamis often occur when the ocean floor is abruptly deformed because of an earthquake. Solidum urged the public not to spread malicious text messages that may trigger panic.
Preparing for an earthquake
Solidum said the best way to prepare for an earthquake and prevent structural damages is to avoid construction over fault lines.
Tuesday’s quake was caused by the vertical movement of the East Bohol Fault. Phivolcs said the movement did not affect other faults across the country.
Solidum said once safe zones are identified, construction firms should ensure that the materials used are not substandard.
Lastly, Solidum said all households and workplaces should be informed of what to do during an earthquake.
"Kung matibay naman ang ating mga bahay at gusali, sunod na papaghandaan ay tamang kilos paglumindol at pagkatapos," he told dzMM.
Seventy-three people have been confirmed killed in the quake, which caused damage to several homes, bridges, and churches.