Manila: At least six people were injured and some buildings damaged on Saturday when an earthquake sent terrified residents of the southern Philippines fleeing their homes before dawn, police said.
The 5.8-magnitude quake struck the northeast coast of Mindanao island at 4:42 am (2042 GMT Friday) at a depth of 11.8 kilometres (7.3 miles), with residents reporting at least three less intense aftershocks.
Officers at the police station in Madrid town, near the epicentre, ducked beneath tables as the glass door of a filing cabinet splintered and a television set fell and shattered off a table, said its police chief Lieutenant Wilson Uanite.
“We saw people running out of their homes. A number of residences sustained minor damage like cracked walls, and we initially counted six people with slight injuries,” Uanite told AFP. Patients were also evacuated at the Madrid District Hospital, which sustained cracks on its concrete walls, he added.
The roof of an old car park in Madrid collapsed, causing slight damage to the town’s two fire trucks and three cars, Uanite said. The Philippines is part of the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, an arc of intense seismic activity that stretches from quake-prone Japan through Southeast Asia and across the Pacific basin.
The country’s most recent deadly quake occurred in April when at least 11 people were killed in a 6.3-magnitude temblor that hit a region north of the capital Manila, causing a supermarket to collapse.