Mayor Abby wants Makati to brace for the ‘Big One’

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The city government of Makati on Friday announced that it will convene a residents’ assembly this month in each of the four barangays transected by the West Valley Fault (WVF) as part of its preparations for the long-predicted, “overdue” magnitude 7 earthquake in Metro Manila.

Makati Mayor Abby Binay said the meetings will be held prior to the implementation of the West Valley Fault Marker Installation Project in Barangays Comembo, East Rembo, Pembo and Rizal.

Binay said the project aims to raise the awareness of residents and other stakeholders on the actual track of the WVF, based on the Walk-the-Fault activity jointly conducted by the PHIVOLCS and the city government. Experts from PHIVOLCS will be invited to attend the assemblies, she said.

“For residents and stakeholders to better appreciate the significance of the markers, they need to be fully aware of the hazards they face in the event of a major earthquake. We will also apprise them of interventions being done and planned by the city government to mitigate damage to lives and properties, and facilitate recovery and rehabilitation,” Binay said.

The WVF marker installation project is part of the Revised Makati Earthquake Contingency Plan based on the Model 8 scenario of the Metro Manila Earthquake Impact Reduction Study (MMEIRS) in 2004.

Based on the MMEIRS results, the projected impact of a magnitude 7.2 earthquake on Makati is as follows: 21,205 dead, 84,822 injured and 1,260,000 affected persons. Meanwhile, 9,092 structures will be heavily damaged, 16,694 partially damaged while 4,983 will be burned down.

The mayor called on concerned barangay officials and residents to make time for the assembly, slated in Comembo on March 8 at 9am at the Comembo Covered Court. The rest are scheduled as follows: Rizal on March 15, Pembo on March 22, and East Rembo on March 29. The time and venue for the three barangays will be confirmed later.

Earthquake hazards faced by barangays transected by the fault line include ground shaking, ground rupture and liquefaction, as well as its secondary hazard, fire.

There are a total of 152 identified areas for the markers and ‘mohons’ (concrete landmarks) in the four barangays, to be distributed as follows: East Rembo, 32 mohons and 25 markers; Comembo, three mohons, two markers; Pembo, 34 mohons, 19 markers; and Rizal, 20 mohons, 17 markers.

Under the Comprehensive Land Use Plan 2013-2023 and its corresponding Zoning Ordinance, the 10-meter buffer zone of the West Valley Fault (five meters on both sides) is delineated as ‘open space’ with corresponding development strategies.