PHILVOLCS director Renato Solidum advised organizations and local officials to create efforts to lessen damages and casualties should a 7.2 magnitude quake hit Metro Manila. Given that our country is prone to earthquakes, it’s best to be prepared and informed should another devastating scenario occur. The strongest recorded quake in the country was in 1897 between the islands of Sulu and Basilan. Meanwhile, the strongest earthquake ever recorded in the world was in 1960 in Valdivia, Chile with a whopping 9.5 magnitude.
He explained that a movement in the West Valley Fault can easily damage 100,000 residential buildings.
The crust and the top of the mantle (the earth’s outer shell) are composed of many pieces, and they constantly move around, sliding and bumping into one another.
Scientists know that earthquakes can happen in different faults in the future, they just can’t pinpoint when. The deadliest earthquake on record was an 8.0 magnitude earthquake in 1556 in Shaanxi, China, killing over 830,000 people. If you’re at school or at work, follow the emergency plan and listen to the person in charge. However, this was considered to be an aftershock of the devastating 2011 earthquake that triggered a massive tsunami in the country.
Do note that the Philippines has been rocked by 6.0 magnitude earthquakes 106 times since the 1600s. These pieces are called tectonic plates and the edges of these plates are called plate boundaries. If you’re outdoors, try to stay away from power lines, buildings, or to anything that might fall. This is due to the fact that the country is located in the “Pacific Ring of Fire.” This is an area where 90% of the world’s volcanoes are located, and where continuous plate movement takes place. According to the United States Geological Survey, “The plate boundaries are made up of many faults, and most of the earthquakes around the world occur on these faults. Since the edges of the plates are rough, they get stuck while the rest of the plate keeps moving. Finally, when the plate has moved far enough, the edges unstick on one of the faults and there is an earthquake.” As these plates move, seismic waves shake the earth, all the way to the earth’s surface.



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