7.0-magnitude earthquake hits Philippines. HI teams assess the situation
After a Wednesday morning earthquake struck the Luzon region of the Philippines, HI reacted immediately to assess community needs.
ARCHIVE: Melanie Ruiz evaluating damage after Typhoon Odette in December, 2021. Philippines. | © Karmela Indoyon / HI
Earthquake affects 21,000 people
Wednesday morning a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit the northern Luzon region of the Philippines, the country’s most populated island, affecting over 21,000 people.
So far, at least five people are reported to have died and another 130 people have been injured. The earthquake caused an estimated $687 million in structural damage, including damage to over 400 homes, several hospitals, bridges, and numerous schools.
At least 58 landslides have been recorded, in which tremors from the quake sent boulders rolling onto the towns beneath them.
“More than 700 aftershocks have also been recorded since the earthquake,” says Melanie Ruiz, HI country manager for the Philippines. “Thousands of families have been displaced and people are camping in tents and makeshift shelters as these aftershocks may continue.”
HI is assessing the damage
HI is already assessing the damage and determining needs with fellow organizations in the area.
“Our evaluation is primarily focusing on access to food, hygiene materials, shelter, and daily essentials with specific attention on the needs of persons with disabilities,” Melanie says. “We have already prepared 100 kits with basic hygiene supplies such as soap, towels and buckets that are available for the immediate response, and we will continue to monitor the situation as it evolves.”
HI has been present in the Philippines since 1985 and has operations near to the affected areas, as well as ongoing disaster response from Super Typhoon Odette (RAI), which struck the Philippines in December of 2021.
HI’s teams are all safe and accounted for. Some were temporarily evacuated for security measures, but can now return safely.