KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews / 30 October) – The Magnitude 6.6 quake that struck at 9:04 a.m. on October 29 with epicenter 25 kilometers southeast of Tulunan town left at least nine persons dead, seven others missing and some 200 persons injured, reports from the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management offices in the affected areas said.
In North Cotabato, Mercy Foronda, head of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) reported four dead in the towns of Arakan, Carmen and Tulunan.
A fifth victim is from Makilala town. Sheryl Orbita, the municipal administrator, told MindaNews that Patricio Lumayong of Barangay Luayan was hit by a debris and rushed to a hospital in Makilala but died in the afternoon. Four residents of Barangay Bato – workers of a banana plantation there, are also missing.
In Davao del Sur, at least four persons were also reported killed – three in Digos City and one in Magsaysay town. Anthony Allada, Magsasysay information officer identified the lone fatality as Jessie Riel Parba and the three missing persons as Benita Saban of Sitio Upper Asbangolek in Barangay Tagaytay; Gilbert Superales and Miggy Attic of Sitio Labidangan in Barangay Upper Bala. Miggy Attic, Sitio Labidangan,
In Digos City, Gil Gubat, head of the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office told MindaNews Wednesday noon that a 36- year old woman and two elderly persons – died from cardiac arrest after the quake. The names of the three were not immediately made available.
Gubat said 66 persons were rushed to the hospitals for treatment but more than twice that number were also injured but did not go to hospitals for treatment of minor injuries.
Mercy Foronda, head of the Cotabato PDRRMO, said two of those who were killed were from Barangay Lanao Kuran in Arakan town – Samuel Anday, 44, and his son Samuel, 7 — who were buried in mud while tending to their farm; Michelle Moira, 23 and pregnant, a resident of Barangay Banayal in Tulunan was hit by a fallen tree; and one from Carmen town died of cardiac arrest.
Foronda said Anday’s other child survived the landslide and was rushed to the Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao City for further treatment.
At least 200 individuals from different areas in the province sustained injuries during the tremors, the PDRRMO reports said.
In Kidapawan City, CDRRM head Psalmer Bernalte reported at least 39 injured, one of them transferred to the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center in Cotabato City.
Mayor Joseph Evangelista ordered the closure of the banks and other private establishments while a team from the Office of the Building Engineer, City Engineering Office, and City DRRM are still conducting assessment and evaluation of the integrity of their structures.
He also ordered department stores and shopping centers here to close shop after his team found several cracks inside their building. These include the Gaisano Grand Mall in Kidapawan, Yongson Shopping Mall, Unitop, Davao Central Warehouse Club, and KMCC Shopping Center.
Evangelista said they have yet to complete their damage assessment of the latest quake as his team has yet to finish their inspection of all the structures in the city, including schools and government offices.
Bernalte dispelled claims of some netizens on social media that there is hoarding of supplies of manufactured goods like noodles and sardines and that people are already into panic buying.
“There is no truth to reports of panic buying. We don’t see people rushing to the market to do panic buying of goods. We have to order these grocery stores to close shop as a precaution to their customers or clients while we are still experiencing strong aftershocks,” said Bernalte.
In Digos City, Gubat said they also ordered the closure of the malls and big shopping centers. He said the CDRRMO and City Engineer’s Office have to check on the structural integrity of these
establishments before giving them clearance to reopen.
Classes remain suspended for the second day on Wednesday, in 13 towns of North Cotabato and Kidapawan City; 10 towns in South Cotabato and the cities of General Santos and Koronadal; and seven towns in Sultan Kudarat and Tacurong City.
Classes were suspended in the North Cotabato towns of Alamada, Aleosan, Arakan, Banisilan, Kabacan, Magpet, Matalam, Makilala, M’lang, Pigcawayan, Pikit, President Roxas and Tulunan, and Kidapawan City; in the South Cotabato towns of Alabel, Glan, Norala, Lake Sebu, Maasim, Malapatan, Malungon, Tampakan, Tantangan, T’boli, and the cities of General Santos and Koronadal; and in the Sultan Kudarat towns of Bagumbayan, Columbio, Esperanza, Isulan, Lutayan, Pres Quirino, Sen Ninoy Aquino and Tacurong City. (Carolyn O. Arguillas and Malu Cadelina Manar / MindaNews)