Tsunami alert up over 19 Philippine provinces after Japan quake

UPDATED 4:20 p.m. - State seismologists raised a tsunami alert over at least 19 areas in the Philippines on Friday afternoon after a magnitude-8.9 quake hit Japan, the biggest to hit that country in seven years.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) raised Tsunami Alert Level 2, warning of possible waves reaching Philippine shores between 5:00 and 7:00 p.m.

The Phivolcs advised the public to be on alert for unusual waves, which may be as high as one meter.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake occurred at 1:46 p.m. near the east coast of Honshu, Japan.

Phivolcs director Renato Solidum Jr. said in an interview on dzBB radio the areas in the eastern coastline include:

  • Batanes Islands

  • Cagayan

  • Ilocos Norte

  • Isabela

  • Quezon

  • Aurora

  • Camarines Norte

  • Camarines Sur

  • Albay

  • Catanduanes

  • Sorsogon

  • Northern Samar

  • Eastern Samar

  • Leyte

  • Northern Leyte

  • Surigao del Norte

  • Surigao del Sur

  • Davao Oriental

  • Davao del Sur

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    Biggest quake in seven years

    The USGS estimated the epicenter at 130 kilometers (km) east of Sendai, Honshu; 178 km east of Yamagata, Honshu; 178 km east-northeast of Fukushima, Honshu; or 373 km northeast of Tokyo.

    According to a report of Reuters, the USGS said the quake struck off-shore 81 miles (130 kms) east of Sendai in Honshu at a depth of 15.2 miles (24 kms).

    The USGS earlier reported a 7.9 magnitude for the quake. However, the USGS revised its report to state that it was a magnitude-8.9 quake.

    The massive earthquake shook buildings in Tokyo, causing "many injuries," at least one fire and triggering a four-meter (13-ft) tsunami, NHK television and witnesses reported.

    There was also a warning of a 10-meter tsunami following the quake, Japan's biggest in seven years.

    No evacuation

    "Walang evacuation order pero dapat maghanda ang komunidad sa eastern coastline ng ating bansa at maghintay ng additional information kung sakaling magkakaroon ng evacuation," Solidum said in an interview on dzBB radio.

    (While there is no evacuation order, the communities in those areas should watch out and wait for additional information in case an evacuation is needed.)

    He said the alert level also stemmed from a similar alert from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.
    "Ito pwedeng malaki at may pwersa (Such waves can be very big and powerful)," Solidum said, adding such waves may continue for hours.

    He advised people to stay away from the shorelines, and not go to the coast to watch the tsunami.

    People in coastal areas should also go further inland, he added.

    "Huwag maging usyoso pagpunta sa dalampasigan (Do not go to the shore to watch the waves)," he said.

    Earlier, Solidum also said residents with boats should secure the vessels in preparation for the waves.

    Meanwhile, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council warned fishermen against going out to sea at this time.

    "Ang mangingisda bantayan nila ito (Fishermen should be on alert)," NDRRMC head Benito Ramos said in a separate interview on dzBB.
    source: gmanews.tv

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