Hundreds affected, dozens displaced by Masbate quake

Published August 19, 2020, 4:18 PM

by Martin Sadongdong

At least 53 families or 269 individuals were affected by the 6.6-magnitude earthquake that struck Cataingan, Masbate, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported Wednesday.

This handout photo received on August 18, 2020 from the Facebook page of Jake Gabilan shows residents walking past debris on the ground after a 6.6-magnitude earthquake hit near the town of Cataingan in the central Philippine province of Masbate province.
(AFP PHOTO / Courtesy of Jake Gabilan / MANILA BULLETIN)

NDRRMC Executive Director Ricardo Jalad said the affected families were noted in the villages of San Rafael, Pawican, Domorog, Poblacion and Malobago — all in Cataingan town alone where the epicenter of Tuesday’s quake was recorded.

Of these, Jalad said 11 families or 40 individuals were evacuated to the Cataingan National High School in Barangay Poblacion.

The NDRRMC has yet to confirm the number of affected individuals in other nearby towns as of this writing.

Cataingan Mayor Felipe Cabataña appealed for help such as food assistance, water, medicines, house construction materials, and tents among others for the affected residents.

He said most of the budget of the local government unit (LGU) was spent in the pandemic response.

NDRRMC spokesperson Mark Timbal said relief aid was already sent to Masbate province to augment the disaster response efforts of the LGU.

In a situational report, the NDRRMC said that the Department of Social Welfare and Development in Bicol Region (DSWD-5) has prepositioned 22,705 food packs and over P3 million in standby funds to assist the affected areas.

Meanwhile, 16 houses were destroyed by the quake while 19 schools, six road sections and seven bridges sustained damages.

The Department of Public Works and Highways estimated the damage to infrastructure at P23.96 million.