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“We should be aware of all the earthquake hazards that could affect us, and prepare for it, not only the ground shaking caused by large earthquakes, but also other hazards like tsunami,” says Undersecretary Renato Solidum, Jr., officer-in-charge of PHIVOLCS.

 

The Philippines is vulnerable to tsunami due to the presence of offshore faults and trenches such as Manila Trench, Negros Trench, Sulu Trench, Cotabato Trench, Philippine Trench, and East Luzon Trough. Tsunamis in the Philippines are rare but could be devastating.

 

In the past, 38 people drowned as a result of a tsunami caused by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake in Mindoro on November 15, 1994. A magnitude 8.1 earthquake on August 17, 1976 generated by the movement along the Cotabato trench produced massive tsunami waves as high as nine meters. Around 8,000 people were killed or missing and it is known as the most disastrous tsunami to hit the Philippines in the last four decades.

 

photo moro gulf 1976

photo mindoro 1994

 

 

 

Quoting an old Japanese proverb Usec. Solidum reiterates that, “the next disaster strikes after we have forgotten the last one.” It is important we learn from the past experiences so we know how we can prepare in case it happen again in the future.

 

DOST-PHIVOLCS Tsunami Prone Map shows coastal areas in the Philippines that can be affected by tsunamis generated by under-the-sea earthquakes or submarine landslide. Tsunami waves generated by earthquakes from other countries may affect the country as well.

 

Tsunami Prone Areas asof2013

 

 

Usec. Solidum advocates the conduct of community-level awareness about earthquakes and tsunamis focused on natural signs of an approaching local tsunami, warning, and evacuation procedure.

 

For information about the event, please contact:

Dr. Renato U. Solidum, Jr.

Undersecretary for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change, DOST

and Officer-in-Charge, PHIVOLCS

(632) 926-2611

 

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