By Mike Crismundo
BUTUAN CITY — Aftershocks are expected following a magnitude 5.3 earthquake off Davao Occidental that struck before midnight on Thursday, December 6.
The state seismology agency described the earthquake as moderately strong but did not expect any damage or injury.
In its bulletin, Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said the tectonic earthquake, recorded at 10:13 p.m., struck 19 kilometers (km) northeast of Malita town, Davao Occidental province.
The tremor had a depth of 185 km, it said.
Nearby General Santos City experienced Intensity 2 tremor.
The quake also jolted residents of nearby Alabel, Sarangani with Intensity 2, while Intensity 1 was also felt in Davao City, Sta. Cruz town, Davao del Sur province and Tupi, South Cotabato province.
Despite the reported intensity, the regional office of the Southern Mindanao Office of Civil Defense noted that there was no casualty nor damage reported.
Earlier, a 4.0 magnitude tectonic earthquake was also registered at 1:50 p.m. on the same day (Dec. 6) and its epicenter was plotted 163 km southeast of nearby Sarangani, Davao Occidental province, with a depth of 33 km, Phivolcs also reported in its bulletin.
The provincial disaster risk reduction and management council there also reported no damage or injury.
The Philippines lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire, where 20 to 25 earthquakes per day, mostly imperceptible, usually occur.