MANILA, Philippines - A powerful earthquake with a force reportedly equivalent to atomic bombs killed more than 90 people in Bohol, Cebu and Siquijor yesterday as it tore down modern buildings and historic churches and triggered stampedes.
As of press time, 15 of the confirmed fatalities were in Cebu City, disaster officials said.
The quake killed another 77 people in the neighboring island of Bohol, famed for its rolling Chocolate Hills and Spanish-era churches, while one person died on nearby Siquijor island.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said the quake, which struck at 8:12 a.m., was measured at magnitude 7.2 and its epicenter was traced some two kilometers southeast of Carmen, Bohol.
The US Geological Survey measured the quake at magnitude 7.1.
“I was thrown to the ground by the strength of the quake. Broken glass rained on me,” said Elmo Alinsunorin, a guard for a government tax office in Cebu. “I thought I was going to die.”
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