By Carmela Martinez
Renato Solidum, officer-in-charge of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), said on Monday that the agency will recommend that the government conducts a structural audit on the houses and buildings located in the earthquake-affected areas in Mindanao.
“In fact, there’s a memorandum circular agreement by the public works and highways, the trade and industry, and the internal local government calling for local governments to make sure that they really implement the code, make sure that materials that are used for construction conform with the building code and guide
the people in making sure that they have earthquake resistant facilities and house,” he said in an interview with ANC’s Early Edition
The National Building Code of the Philippines (NBCP) enumerates the technical requirements in renovating and constructing buildings and structures in the Philippines. It covers everything from the materials to be used, design, the maintenance and even the demolition of the buildings or houses.
Solidum noted that if all the guidelines in the NBCP were followed, a building should not collapse even at intensity 8.
“The intensity of shaking in most areas in the epicenter was only [at] intensity 7. Our building code assures us that when we follow this not only in the desired phase but the actual materials used and the workmanship is good the building should not collapse or houses should not collapse also at intensity 8,” he said.
Solidum said the agency observed that most of the buildings and houses in the earthquake-hit areas collapsed because these could have been built with substandard materials. He noted that even the walls of schools were crushed by the school ceilings that were heavy.
According to a report by ABS-CBN News, Davao del Sur alone estimated the damage caused by the series of quakes at P1 billion.