By Mike U. Crismundo
Butuan City – A 4.8-magnitude aftershock rattled Surigao City, Tuesday, as Surigaonons continued to reel from the earth’s ramblings ever since a major 6.7-magnitude earthquake devastated the region over a month ago.
In its bulletin, Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said a 4.8 magnitude earthquake was recorded at 7:47 p.m. on Tuesday, with the epicenter plotted seven kilometers (km) southwest of San Jose (Dinagat Islands), with a depth of 32 km, the state agency said.
Intensity-5 was registered in Surigao City, the state agency said.
Then at 11:01 p.m., a 2.1-magnitude tremor rocked Dinagat Islands province anew. The epicenter was traced only 12 km northwest of San Jose town, with a depth of 39 km, Phivolcs further added, in its latest bulletin.
Residents, guests of various hotels, inns, and lodging houses ran to the streets when the tremor shook this northeastern-tip for less than 10 seconds.
Residents who were taking their dinner scampered and ran to the streets for safety.
Officials of the city disaster risk reduction and management council (DRRMC) there said no one was reported hurt during the incident.
The frequent occurrence of aftershocks, as well as the initial terror felt in the February 10 major earthquake, has prompted the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) into extending psychosocial support to 2,000 Surigaonons, who may have been traumatized by the earthquakes.
For more than a month now, the PRC continues to implement its Psychosocial Support Program (PSP), Restoring Family Links (RFL), and Referral Service to the quake victims.
The PRC has established three welfare desks, one at the Caraga Regional Hospital, the other at Capitol Grounds Surigao City and at the Surigao City Auditorium.
Psychosocial support helps mitigate the impact of disasters and helps survivors cope by offering them psychological first-aid (practical assistance, such as helping them get in touch with family members), guidance and counseling.
“We, at the Red Cross, with the help of our trained social workers and volunteers, assist the immediate family members of victims in the aftermath of disasters by helping them cope and giving them hope,” said PRC Chairman Richard Gordon.
“It is in times like this that define our mission to alleviate the suffering of those who are in greatest need. We do not just provide relief assistance, we also address the psychological and social needs of individuals and families to help ease their physical and emotional pain,” Gordon added.