Hundreds of aftershocks shake earthquake-hit northern Philippines

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Anxious residents slept outside after hundreds of aftershocks rattled the earthquake-hit northern Phil-ippines, locals said Thursday, as President Ferdinand Marcos Jr inspected damage in the region.

Five people were killed and more than 150 in-jured when a 7.0-magnitude quake struck the lightly populated province of Abra on Wednesday morning, authorities said.

The powerful quake rippled across the moun-tainous area, toppling buildings, triggering landslides and shaking high-rise towers hundreds of kilometres away in the capital Manila.

“Aftershocks happen almost every 20 minutes, 15 minutes since yesterday,” said Reggi Tolentino, a restaurant owner in Abra’s provincial capital Ban-gued.

“Many slept outside last night, almost every fam-ily.” Some families have been given modular tents to stay in. Marcos Jr has urged people to wait for their homes to be inspected before moving back.

Hundreds of buildings were damaged or de-stroyed, roads were blocked by landslides, and power was knocked out in affected areas.

But in Abra, which felt the full force of the quake, overall damage had been “very minimal”, police chief Colonel Maly Cula told AFP.

“We don’t have a lot of people in evacuation sites, although many people are staying in the streets because of the aftershocks,” Cula said.

“Abra is back to normal.” Marcos Jr, who took office last month, arrived in Bangued on Thursday to inspect the damage and discuss the response effort with government, military and disaster officials.—AFP

 

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