Bohol islands sinking amid aftershocks

Posted at 10/21/13 10:13 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- Some small islands off the coast of Bohol are sinking amid aftershocks following the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that hit the province last October 15, residents said.

Isla Batasan is one of the islands located between Bohol and Cebu. It is experiencing sudden floods, causing its residents to believe that their island is slowly sinking.

"Iba ngayon. Dati nung lumindol hindi nakakapasok yung tubig dagat pero kagabi, hanggang tuhod yung tubig," said Dindo Carmona, a barangay councilor.

The flood also left watermarks on some of the buildings on the island.

Some residents decided to stay on their boats after their houses were submerged in water after the earthquake.

On Isla Obay, another island in the area, residents cannot clearly see the shore, even during low tide.

Fishermen also find it hard to catch fish because of aftershocks.

Residents of Isla Bagong Banwa are suffering from lack of supplies and food as fishermen experience difficulty in finding fish.

Captain Epifanio Saavedra of Isla Batasan feels helpless seeing his constituents suffer from lack of food and supplies.

"Problema po namin dito talaga ang pagkain," he adds.

Aside from lack of food and other supplies, residents of the islands are constantly in fear of more aftershocks.

Director Renato Solidum of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) explain that there is indeed a big possibility that some islands may start sinking after the earthquake, due to liquefaction and earthquake deformation.

Liquefaction happens when the soil loses its strength and stiffness due to an earthquake, causing it to soften and behave like liquid.

Earthquake deformation, on the other hand, refers to a change in the original shape of a material.

Solidum added that the agency will have to study the islands further to know the why they are sinking. - with reports from Ron Gagalac, ABS-CBN News