Rescuers recover an unidentified man under the rubbles at a fish port in Pasil, Cebu, central Philippines Tuesday Oct. 15, 2013. A 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck in the central Philippines Tuesday morning, collapsing roofs and buildings, cracking walls and roads and killing at least 20 people. AP/Chester Baldicantos

(PHILSTAR) By Dennis Carcamo - A total of 67 people have been confirmed killed, more than nine hours after a magnitude-7.2 earthquake struck Central Visayas on Tuesday.

Chief Superintendent Danilo Constantino, Central Visayas police regional office director, said majority of the fatalities have recorded in Bohol province, where the epicenter of the temblor was recorded.

Constantino said 57 bodies have been recovered in parts of Bohol, nine in Cebu province and one in Siquijor.

The regional police director also said that a total of 167 people have been reported injured in the entire region.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) reported that a magnitude-7.2 eartquake struck two kilometers southeast of Carmen, Bohol at 8:12 a.m. It was felt strongest in Tagbilaran, Bohol at Intensity 7.

Vilma Yorong, a Bohol provincial government employee, said she was in a village hall in Maribojoc town when "the lights suddenly went out and we felt the earthquake."

"We ran out of the building, and outside, we hugged trees because the tremors were so strong," he told The Associated Press by phone. "When the shaking stopped, I ran to the street and there I saw several injured people. Some were saying their church has collapsed."

She said that she and the others ran up a mountain fearing a tsunami would follow the quake. "Minutes after the earthquake, people were pushing each other to go up the hill," she said.

Ley Sarigumba of Booy District in Tagbilaran City said that there was "deafening silence" after the earthquake. She said people were staying outside their homes.

She also said that several houses as well as the city hall of Sagbayan town collapsed due to the earthquake.

Phivolcs had reported that the capital city has been hit by several aftershocks, and the strongest was felt at Intensity 4. The aftershocks were expected to continue for a week.

Bohol Gov. Edgar Chiato said they are still confirming the damage and more reports of casualties from the earthquake.

"Lahat ng teams natin naka-deploy to get more feed about the towns. Merong mga reported na simbahan na nasira in the northern part of Bohol, sa Upay, na ang aftershock was felt there and Kalibo, the other side of Bohol. It seems the whole province was hit. I'm not surprised nasama din yung ibang mga probinsya kalapit ng Bohol," Chiato said.

Based on Twitter posts, Chiato was referring to the centuries-old Loboc Church. The structure collapsed during the quake.

The governor said that they have yet to receive reports that high rise buildings in the province, particularly in Tagbilaran, were damaged by the earthquake.

"Walang report ngayon o major damage na matataas na building dito (Tagbilaran). Pero meron kaming mga report yung old city hall ng Tagbilaran may portion dun na bumagsak. May tao natamaan sa ilalim. Ngayon eh nasa hospital na," Chiato said.

He said he has alerted all the local officials in the towns of Bohol and warned them against aftershocks.

"Nag-text blast nga tayo sa mga kapitan. We hope ang mga cellsites ay di natamaan para yung communication flow namin ay magiging maayos pa rin. We are alerting all for the possibility of aftershocks. Iyong mga coastal areas ay 'di naman siguro threatened ng tsunami kasi maraming nakapaligid sa Bohol," the governor said. with the Associated Press

Magnitude 7.2 quake strikes Central Visayas By Dennis Carcamo ( | Updated October 15, 2013 - 8:43am 86 1046 googleplus3 5


MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) - A magnitude 7.2 earthquake on Tuesday struck provinces in Central Visayas and some parts of Mindanao.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said the quake's epicenter was traced at two kilometers of Carmen, Bohol.

The quake, which struck at 8:12 a.m., struck at a depth of 33 kilometers.

The quake was felt at Intensity 7 in Tagbilaran, Bohol; Intensity 6 in INigaran, Negros Occidental and Intensity 5 in Iloilo City and La Carloca in Iloilo.

It was also felt at Intensity 4 in Masbate City, Roxas City, San Jose Culasi in Antique and Guihulngan in Negros Oriental and Intensity 3 in Davao City.

Phivolcs Director Renato Solidum said in a radio interview that the quake lasted for 30 seconds.

He said that massive damage to structures particularly old establishments is expected in a major earthquake.

Solidum said that the massive amount of energy released by the movement of the faultline in Carmen, Bohol could damage weak structures in the region and those in the coastlines where ground is soft.

"Kapag magnitude 7 to 8 ang category, ang tawag po natin diyan ay major earthquake. Sa ganoong lakas ng enerhiya na inilabas, posible talagang malakas ang naramdaman hindi lang sa Bohol pati na sa karatig na probinsya tulad ng Cebu, lalong lalo na kung malambot ang lupa," Solidum said in a separate radio interview.

"Sa ganitong intensity puwedeng magkaroon ng mga damage ang mga bahay at iba ay posible ngang bumagsak kung ang disenyo ay hindi akma o mahina na ang building versus doon sa malakas na paghanig," he added.

Initial reports said that several structures in Cebu and Bohol, including old churches and establishments, collapsed after the major earthquake.

Solidum said that Bohol will be hit by aftershocks for a week. As of this posting, at least seven aftershocks have been recorded in the province.

He cited that weak aftershocks were experienced during the 6.9 magnitude quake in Negros Oriental last year.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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