PHILIPPINE Red Cross (PRC) Chairman and CEO Richard Gordon immediately ordered the activation and deployment of its Red Cross 143 (RC143) volunteers and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel after a 7.4-magnitude earthquake struck Surigao Del Sur and neighboring provinces on Saturday night.
“PRC’s Emergency Response Unit (ERU), EMS personnel, volunteers, and staff are evaluating the situation in affected communities. With thousands of volunteers on the ground, we can immediately receive information about their situations, enabling us to immediately provide humanitarian aid to those who need it,” said Gordon, who convened a meeting with members of a core team of the PRC immediately after the earthquake was experienced.
As of December 2, the PRC’s EMS personnel provided pre-hospital treatment and transported affected individuals in Agusan Del Norte to hospitals, including a person with a head injury.
Assets and rescue equipment are also deployed in Surigao Del Sur, Bukidnon, Surigao Del Norte, Davao Oriental, and Zamboanga Del Norte.
PRC chapters in the affected regions are currently coordinating with local government units, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office and Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officers to assess where additional assistance is needed.
According to the PRC’s Operations Center, the earthquake resulted in power outages in the municipalities of San Francisco and Prosperidad in Agusan Del Sur. A fire incident at SM Butuan damaged ceilings and walls while the Robinsons Butuan Mall reported collapsed ceilings.
The Bislig Bridge in Surigao Del Sur sustained cracks, while five residential houses in Gingoog, Misamis Oriental, also incurred damages, according to authorities.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) reported that the earthquake’s depth of focus was eight kilometers with the epicenter at Hinatuan, Surigao Del Sur.
The Phivolcs lifted the tsunami warning last Sunday.