At least 7 dead, 120 injured in magnitude 6.7 Surigao quake

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — The Surigao City Disaster Council said at least seven people were reported dead and 120 injured following the 6.7-magnitude earthquake that shook Surigao City Friday night.

This is according to a Surigao City Disaster and Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) document issued Saturday, recommending the declaration of a 'state of calamity' in Surigao City.

This differs slightly from the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council's (NDRRMC) data as of Sunday, which reported four confirmed deaths and 200 injured in the quake.

However, the NDRRMC said this number may increase as the Department of Interior and Local Government is verifying two other reported casualties for its official count.

At least 11 Surigao del Norte towns were affected by the quake, which also damaged the provincial capitol, two major bridges, the city airport, and other infrastructures.

The NDRRMC is also on red alert as aftershocks continue to hit Surigao City.

Power restored, no water supply

In a briefing held Sunday, NDRRMC Spokesperson Mina Marasigan said power was restored in Surigao City, Saturday evening.

However, several municipalities are still without electricity as a preventive measure from the quake's aftershocks.

"Sa munispyo ng San Francisco, Malimono, Placer, Sison, Tagana-an, lahat po ito ay sa probinsya ng Surigao del Norte. Kasalukuyan po silang nakararanas ng problema sa supply ng kuryente,"Marasigan said.

[Translation: The municipalities of San Francisco, Malimono, Placer, Sison, Tagana-an, are all in Surigao del Norte. They have issues with power supply.]

She said the NDRRMC is coordinating with authorities to ensure power is restored in the municipalities.

Water supply also remains problematic in Surigao City, after the quake damaged water systems in the city and other Surigao del Norte municipalities.

Marasigan said the NDRRMC will distribute water to those without access to it.

"Kasalukuyan po ay magkakaroon tayo ng distribution ng supply ng tubig para sa mga kababayan na nakararanas ng problema dahil sa supply ng tubig,"she said.

[Translation: We will be distributing water for those who do not have access to a steady water supply.]

Some roads damaged, airport closed

The quake has left several provincial roads and bridges damaged.

Marasigan said according to the NDRRMC's latest tally, 5 provincial roads and 6 bridges were affected by the quake.

She said the government has designated alternative routes to ensure the city is not blocked. She added, prior to the quake, some of the bridges were already due for repair.

The damage dealt by the quake also forced the closure of the Surigao City domestic airport.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) said the airport might be closed until March 10.

Flights to Surigao will be diverted to the Butuan airport until the Surigao airport is reopened.

Relief Operations underway

Relief operations are currently underway for those affected by the quake.

Marasigan said as of Sunday, a C-130 plane carrying additional relief goods has landed in Butuan City.

The C-130 is carrying power generators, solar lamps, high-energy biscuits, brown rice, laminated sack, mosquito net, plastic mats and blankets.

Marasigan said relief goods are sufficient, but the NDRRMC is not closing its doors to those who would like to donate.

She also called on civil and structural engineers to help the government assess the structural integrity of buildings affected by the quake.

She said volunteers may coordinate with the CARAGA Regional Council or the National Council's cluster.

"Kung mas marami at mao-optimize po natin ang ating mga those in private practice ay mas mapapabilis po ang serbisyo na mabibigay natin sa ating mga kababayan," she said.

[Translation: If there are more people, and if we can optimize those in private practice, we can expedite our services for our countrymen.]

More aftershocks expected

Marasigan urged residents to be on heightened alert, especially as Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) said there may be more aftershocks in the following days.

She says residents should remain vigilant, and should not forget to follow safety measures after the quake.

"Kailangan tuloy ang pagiging pagmatyag natin sa maaring maging epekto ng malakas na pagyanig na ito. So tuloy-tuloy ang ating pag-iigting kasabay ng mga preparedness measures natin. Kasabay rin ng ating relief efforts ay yung pagbibigay ng mensahe kung ano yung mga hakbangin na kailangan gawin," she said.

[Translation: We have to be continuously aware of the earthquake's effects. We have to be more aware, in addition to our preparedness measures. In addition to our relief efforts, we have to send spread the message as to what they have to do.]

Marasigan stressed the importance of taking earthquake and disaster preparedness seriously.

Related: NDRRMC calls for heightened disaster preparedness

She also urged residents to keep safe and make sure their houses remain structurally sound after the quake.

"Wag po basta babalik na lang. Siguraduhin na ang mga bahay ay puwede pa upahan," Marasigan said.

[Translation: Don't go home without verification. Make sure your houses are still safe to live in.]