Surigao 'still in chaos', 'state of shock' after quake: governor


Posted at Feb 11 2017 11:39 AM | Updated as of Feb 11 2017 12:01 PM

Surigao del Norte Governor Sol Matugas appealed for help as the province is "still in chaos" and some residents are "still in a state of shock" after Friday's 6.7 magnitude quake.

Matugas sought national assistance for the repair of damaged infrastructures threatening safety and affecting the flow of goods to affected areas.

Flights to Surigao have been cancelled due to cracks in the airport's runway. Two bridges that serve as major arteries in the municipalities of San Francisco and Malimono also collapsed due to the quake, Matugas said.

Without the Surigao airport, aid from the national government will have to be flown into the Butuan aiport, a 2-hour drive from Surigao.

"Yung airport, gusto namin marepair agad... The DPWH should also look into the bridges that collapsed. We have structural engineers pero gusto ko din from the national to confirm," Matugas said.

Though temporary detours for light vehicles have been put in place, Matugas advised relatives of Surigao residents to avoid heading to the province to check on their relatives.

"Wag na muna kasi baka makadagdag pa sa problema," she said as cracks along roads have yet to be repaired.

Government officials are also having a hard time meeting and going through the regular processes needed to extend aid as the provincial capitol was also damaged by the quake.

"Engineers are assessing damage to infrastructure especially sa capitol dahil baka mag-crack habang nagpla-plano kami sa loob," Matugas said.

As of 10 a.m., 4 people, including a 4-year-old boy died due to blunt force trauma.

The victims were identified as Robert Eludo Jr., 39, Lito Wilson, estimated to be in his mis-20s, and, JM Ariar, 4. Officials have yet to establish the identity of the 4th casualty.

At least 13 patients have been admitted at the Caraga Regional Hospital due to serious injuries, while 68 others were confined for minor injuries.

A total blackout is being experienced in the municipalities of San Francisco and Malimono as these are the areas most severed by the shock, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council spokesperson Romina Marasigan said.

Authorities have yet to assess the number of affected families, and the amount of damage brought by the disaster.