TACLOBAN CITY- No casualties and no extensive damage of properties and agriculture were reported when a 5.4 magnitude earthquake hit supertyphoon Yolanda-devastated communities in Leyte and Southern Leyte on July 25, local disaster officials say. According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), the quake occurred at 7:57 a.m. and was tectonic in origin and had a depth of six kilometers, with the epicenter at 8 kilometers southwest of Hinundayan, Southern Leyte.

The source of the quake was traced to the Philippine Fault Zone Leyte Segment. Southern Leyte Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office has reported that after the quake, minor cracks were found in some school buildings like the San Juan National High School, Basak Elementary School, Bobon Elementary School in the town of San Juan. “No injuries, no casualties, and no damage in infrastructure and agriculture were also reported,” it added.

In Hinundayan, minor cracks were visible in its Municipal Gymnasium and in some houses in Brgy. Plaridel, while in Saint Bernard, minor cracks were visible in its Central Elementary School, Tourism Office,and in Guinsaugon National High School.Southern Leyte Governor Roger Mercado, in his social media account,posted that at least 30 families in the towns of Hinundayan, San Juan,and St. Bernard, which are prone to landslides, were directed for forced evacuation while suspension of classes were also ordered. About 50 patients were also evacuated from the Anahawan District Hospital after “big cracks” appeared on the hospital’s walls, Mercado added.
The tremor was also felt in Hinunangan and St. Bernard,Southern Leyte, intensity VI (very strong); Tacloban city, intensity IV; Palo, Leyte, intensity III; Cebu city, Cebu City, Talisay City, Surigao City, intensity II ; and Lapu Lapu City, intensity I. (RONALD O.REYES)