GENERAL SANTOS CITY – Government buildings and other vital public structures here remained “safe and intact” in the wake of the magnitude-7.1 earthquake that jolted parts of Mindanao on Thursday night.
Engr. Emerald Signar, head of the City Engineer’s Office (CEO), said Friday they have not recorded any structural damage in all buildings owned by the local government as a result of the quake based on their rapid assessment.
He said the assessment was ordered by City Mayor Ronnel Rivera following the 8:23 p.m. quake, which was felt at Intensity 5 in the city.
The city is among the closest to its epicenter, which was traced in the seas about 231 kilometers southeast of Jose Abad Santos town in Davao Occidental.
Rivera declared a temporary work suspension at the city hall and several other local government buildings on Friday morning to facilitate the assessment but was recalled at 1 p.m. upon the recommendation of the CEO.
Aside from the city, the CEO team assessed the legislative or Sangguniang Panlalawigan building, Investment Center building and the Bulaong transport terminal.
“We found some cracks but they were mainly non-structural. It affected the partitions, masonry walls, hollow blocks, finishing, plastering and others were on the tiles,” Signar told reporters.
He said the overall structural integrity of the buildings remains intact and the assessed cracks do not pose any risk to city government workers.
The Department of Public Works and Highways has not also found any damage to the bridges, roads and other government structures in the city.
Engr. Rey Francisco, head of the South Cotabato II District Engineering Office, all public structures in the area are considered safe for use so far.
The city government’s Office of the Building Official also conducted a series of inspections on private buildings on Friday morning but has not yet released an official report. (PNA)