Ormoc City would finally be placed under a state of calamity after the biggest aftershock hit it Monday morning. The 5.8 magnitude aftershock rocked Ormoc City and other parts of Leyte at 9:41 a.m., four days after the 6.5 earthquake that shook the Visayas.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said the temblor that hit Ormoc earlier today was only one of the 300 aftershocks that followed Thursday’s temblor. Yet it still caused panic from traumatized residents who rushed out of the buildings during the aftershock. This includes the students of New Ormoc City National High School, some of which fainted during the commotion.
Cabinet members and other national government officials met with Leyte local officials in Ormoc today and declared a state of calamity. “It was determined that Ormoc City, along with Kananga, a Leyte municipality, would be declared under a state of calamity,” Rappler quoted Presidential Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella as saying. National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) Executive Director Ricardo Jalad also told Rappler in a message, “It’s the call of [the] LGU to declare a state of calamity. Considering the effects, I think Ormoc satisfies the criteria.”
Jalad added that this would provide Ormoc access to around P60 million DRRM fund as well as around P100 million Quick Response Fund. According to Inquirer.Net, the NDRRMC estimated a total of P51,786,698.20 cost in damages due to Thursday’s quake. The damages include 14 road sections and 10 bridges in Biliran, Leyte and Southern Leyte.
A region-wide blackout also followed shortly after the quake. The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) stated Friday evening that power should be back within two to three days after they’re able to create a bypass line from the Tabango Substation to Ormoc Substation. In its latest update, Leyeco II reported Monday night that the NGCP was not able to create the bypass line on schedule due to bad weather and has rescheduled it for Tuesday.