1 Child Dead, Dozens Injured as Philippines Rocked by 6.4 Magnitude Earthquake

Philippines earthquake causes loss of life, considerable material damage
October 16, 2019 Updated: October 16, 2019

A powerful earthquake hit the island of Mindanao in the Philippines at 7:37 p.m. on Wednesday, with locals now experiencing aftershocks, fires, and blackouts, according to local media reports.

The earthquake caused extensive damage to buildings in the region around the epicenter, which is about 37 miles from the country’s third-largest municipality, Davao City, and its population of over 1.6 million people.

One child died and more than two dozen were injured, Reuters reported. Reuel Limbungan, mayor of Tulunan in North Cotabato province, added to DZMM Radio that two more people were injured.

The focus of the quake, which is the point in the Earth where it originated, was located about five miles below the surface, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology. Shallow earthquakes are known to cause more damage on the surface than those originating from deeper zones.

The earthquake did not pose a risk of tsunamis. However, it did send people fleeing from shopping malls and other buildings as cracks opened in walls and buildings swayed. Parked motorbikes fell over across the region, indicating the severity of the movements. Schools in a number of areas are to remain closed until they have been inspected by qualified engineers.

The developing nation of the Philippines is an archipelagic state of over 7,500 islands in the western Pacific, with a population of over 100 million. Due to its location on the Pacific Rim of Fire, earthquakes are a common occurrence, with seismological institutes there regularly recording 20 or more earthquakes of varying intensity per day.