Philippines Earthquake Measures 7.2, At Least Six Killed

Update 1:10 AM EDT:

The death toll from the Philippines earthquake has risen to 20, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

Original Report:

A large earthquake struck the Philippines on Tuesday morning, causing damage and killing at least six people. The quake measured 7.2-magnitude in the Richter scale and was centered 56 miles deep under Carmen town on Bohol Island.

At least two people were killed in Cebu province when the roof of a market in Mandaue collapsed, according to TV reports. At least 19 people were injured and several were rushed out of buildings and homes, including hospitals, as aftershocks continued.

USA Today reports that four other people were killed when the earthquake caused part of a fish port to collapse in Cebu city, across the strait from the epicenter.

Photos from TV stations in Cebu also showed a fallen concrete building, which was once two stories tall. Reports said that two people, including an eight-month-old, were pulled from the rubble.

The Wall Street Journal notes that local governments fear the death toll from the Philippines earthquake could increase as more reports are gathered. Thankfully, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center reported that there is no widespread threat of a tsunami from the tremors.

Bohol Governor Edgar Chatto told a local new station, “There are still tremors and aftershocks. We are monitoring all the areas in our province with our disaster teams.” Chatto added that local officials are doing their best to calm residents, who are panicking over the possibility of a tsunami coming their way.

Along with markets and residential buildings, several historic churches also saw significant damage from the earthquake. A 17th century church in Loboc, which is a popular tourist attraction, crumbled to pieces, and almost half of it was completely ruined. Other churches from the same time period saw damage as well.

The death toll from the Philippines earthquake will likely be lower than normal, because Tuesday is a national holiday and schools and offices are closed.

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