Philippines Earthquake Triggers Tsunami Alerts in Japan

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Late Saturday, Philippines earthquake in the Mindanao was jolted by a substantial measuring at least 7.5 magnitude on the Richter scale. This seismic event prompted urgent evacuation directives for specific regions and southwestern Japanese coastal areas due to potential tsunami waves, estimated to reach heights of a meter (3 feet) or more.

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The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) issued warnings indicating the anticipated arrival of waves in the Philippines around midnight (1600 GMT), persisting for several hours. Such occurrences are common in the Philippines, located within the volatile “Ring of Fire,” an encircling belt of volcanoes across the Pacific Ocean notorious for seismic activity.

Forecasts from the U.S. Tsunami Warning System cautioned the likelihood of waves potentially surging up to 3 meters above the tide level along select Philippine coastlines. Phivolcs advised vessels already at sea to remain offshore in deep waters until further notice. Residents residing near the coastlines of Surigao Del Sur and Davao Oriental provinces were urged to evacuate promptly or relocate to higher ground.

Meanwhile, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported the expected arrival of one-meter high tsunami waves along Japan’s southwestern coast approximately 30 minutes after the seismic event—by 1:30 a.m. on Sunday (1630 GMT on Saturday).

Philippines Earthquake

Phivolcs expressed minimal expectations of substantial damage from the earthquake but cautioned about potential aftershocks. Raymark Gentallan, the local police chief of Hinatuan, a coastal town near the epicenter, reported power outages following the quake. However, disaster response teams have reported no casualties or damages thus far.

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The European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) reported the Philippines earthquake at a magnitude of 7.5, occurring at a depth of 63 km (39 miles).

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the earthquake measured 7.6 in magnitude, reaching a depth of 32 km (20 miles) and striking at 10:37 p.m. local time in the Philippines (1437 GMT).

In response to the seismic activity in the Philippines, the Japan Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami alert for the Pacific coast of western Japan. The estimated 1-meter high tsunami is anticipated to land in Japan as early as 1:30 a.m. on Sunday (1630 GMT on Saturday), as reported by public broadcaster NHK.

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