Manila buildings at risk of quake hit

About 1,983 buildings in Metro Manila have been pronounced by government agencies to be structurally unsafe and would be at risk when a strong earthquake hit, Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita said.

By Guil Franco (Our correspondent)

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Published: Fri 2 Jun 2006, 1:54 PM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 4:41 PM

Ermita said the buildings — which were declared by the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to be weak and needing quick repairs or immediate 'seismic refitting' to withstand strong quakes — included those of the Department of Education (DepEd), the Land Transportation Office (LTO), and most three- or four-storey school buildings.

'We will not delay the opening of classes but the NDCC will inform these schools that they need to be refitted as soon as possible,' Ermita said.

He said 60 buildings were in danger of sustaining life-threatening damage, and these included the DepEd's building in suburban Pasig City, the Batasan Hills Elementary School, the Malabon Elementary School, the Philippine Children's Medical Centre and the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.

Government specialists said at least six bridges also needed seismic refitting.

Days after a 6.2-magnitude earthquake killed at least 3,000 people and displaced more than 200,000 others in Indonesia, the NDCC has been tasked to conduct earthquake-preparedness drills in all public schools amid warnings from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology that the country could be hit by an equally strong quake.

'Our preparedness at all time, the continuous updating of our disaster monitoring and mitigation plans, and the solidarity and cooperation of all sectors are important to minimise the loss of lives and property,' Ermita, quoting President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, said.



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