A 7.1-magnitude earthquake left at least four people dead and injured dozens in the Philippines, where the temblor set off landslides, damaged buildings and prompted terrified crowds to rush outdoors.
At least four people have been killed and more than 60 others injured after a 7.1-magnitude earthquake hit the northern Philippines.
The shallow but powerful quake struck the mountainous and lightly populated province of Abra on the main island of Luzon at 8:43 am (0043 GMT) on Wednesday, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said.
Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos told a televised news conference that two people died in Benguet province, one in Abra province, and one more in another province.
Shallow earthquakes tend to cause more damage than deeper ones. This one left scores of people injured, triggered landslides, damaged churches, and knocked out power.
The quake was also felt strongly in Manila and the city's metro rail systems were halted at rush hour after the quake, the Transport Ministry said.
Philippine President, Ferdinand Marcos Jr, has ordered the immediate dispatch of rescue teams to the affected areas, said the press secretary.
The president will also fly there to observe the area, the secretary added.
Magnitude 7.1 earthquake strikes Philippines' largest and most populous island, Luzon pic.twitter.com/Lp2Kq1omHc— TRT World Now (@TRTWorldNow) July 27, 2022
Strongest recorded quake in years
In Bangued, the provincial capital of Abra, which felt the full force of the quake, a 23-year-old woman was killed after a wall fell on her, police said.
At least 62 people were injured in the province.
A 25-year-old construction worker in La Trinidad, the capital of the landlocked province Benguet, died when the three-storey building he was working on collapsed, police said. Seven other workers escaped unharmed.
Another person was killed when he fell off a construction site in the mountains of Kalinga province, where eight people were also injured, police said.
The Philippines is regularly rocked by quakes due to its location on the Pacific "Ring of Fire", an arc of intense seismic activity that stretches from Japan through Southeast Asia and across the Pacific basin.
Wednesday's quake was the strongest recorded in the Philippines in years and was felt across swathes of Luzon island, the most populous in the archipelago.
It was followed by more than 200 aftershocks, the local seismological agency said. Several of the subsequent quakes measured from magnitude 4.7 to 4.9, according to USGS.
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