A 7.6 Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Southern Philippines

A seismic event with a magnitude of 7.6 struck near the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, triggering alarm in the region. The U.S. Geological Survey reported the earthquake's strength and proximity to land, causing local communities to feel the tremors. The incident occurred shortly after 10:30 p.m. local time on Saturday.

Initially, the Tsunami Warning Center expressed concerns about potential tsunami waves affecting the southern Philippines, Indonesia, Palau, and Malaysia. However, the center later rescinded the tsunami warning. In response to the seismic activity, evacuation orders were issued in various parts of Okinawa Prefecture, Japan, affecting thousands of residents, even though Okinawa is over 1,200 miles away from Mindanao.

Reports from the Philippines indicated villagers evacuating their homes around midnight, with the government's disaster-response agency confirming the evacuation but unable to provide specific details immediately. Despite the quake's magnitude, Teresito Bacolcol, the head of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology, informed The Associated Press that, more than three hours after the event, there were no reports of a tsunami hitting the coast. Bacolcol suggested that a 3.2-foot tsunami could occur based on the quake's magnitude, but the wave's height might be greater in enclosed areas such as coves, bays, and straits.

The Philippines, situated on the Pacific "Ring of Fire," experiences frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions due to its location on a seismic fault arc around the ocean. Additionally, the archipelago is susceptible to around 20 typhoons and storms annually, making it one of the world's most disaster-prone countries.


 

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