Philippines + 3 more

ASEAN Weekly Disaster Update, 14 – 20 Oct 2019

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During the week, the disaster situation in ASEAN was dominated by several geophysical events, ranging from light volcanic activities to higher frequencies of earthquakes, in which one of them (in the Philippines) had caused significant damages. Meanwhile, the hydro-meteorological risks remained low as the Southwest Monsoon continued to weaken, although localised storms and floods were still reported in Thailand and Viet Nam.


The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) reported a strong and shallow earthquake with magnitude 6.3 and a depth of focus of 9 km, struck North Cotabato Province, Mindanao Island, on 16 October 2019 at 18:38 (UTC+7). The earthquake was followed by several aftershocks in which three of them were magnitude 5.0 and above. With reported intensities ranging from I to VII in nearby areas, the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC) of the Philippines reported that more than 20,000 people are affected and more than 4,000 people are internally displaced. The situation is still within the national capacities.


Most parts of the equatorial ASEAN region continued to experience showers during the week, but southern Sumatra (Indonesia) remained dry and hundreds of hotspot activities are still present. Isolated showers fell over the northern part of the region, while in the northeast, there was heavy rainfall due to the development of Typhoon Neoguri.


There were twelve (12) earthquakes with magnitude 5.0 and above that occurred last week in Indonesia (BMKG) and the Philippines (PHIVOLCS). After the M 6.3 earthquake in North Cotabato on 16 October 2019, there were three (3) aftershocks in nearby areas with magnitude above 5.0. Separately, there were eruption events for Merapi and Krakatau Volcanos (Indonesia). However, both of the volcanos remain at level II out of IV.


The ASEAN Specialised Meteorological Centre (ASMC) forecasts that showers will occur in the equatorial and southern part of the ASEAN region, although drier weather can be expected for southern parts of Sumatra and Kalimantan, and the Java Sea area (Indonesia). The prevailing winds will remain light over the equatorial areas and blow from the southeast or south. On the other hand, isolated showers are forecast over the Mekong sub-region, with the prevailing winds expected to weaken and become variable in direction.