Earthquake death toll climbs to 6 in Philippines

February 07 [Tue], 2012, 10:38
(CNN) -- A 6.8-magnitude earthquake struck Monday off the third-largest island in the Philippines, killing at least six people and prompting the country to issue a tsunami alert for the coastlines near the epicenter.
The quake struck about karen millen11:49 a.m. (10:49 p.m. Sunday ET) about 70 kilometers (44 miles) from the coastal city of Dumaguete on the Philippine island of Negros, the U.S. Geological Survey said.
The dead included two elementary school children, karen millen dressesauthorities said, according to the Philippines News Agency. The girls died when walls at their schools collapsed on them, National Police spokesman Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz Jr. said.
The earthquake also caused cracked walls and shattered windows in a department store on Negros, said Maj. karen millen sale Reynaldo Balido, the military assistant for operations at the Office of Civil Defense.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology issued a level 2 tsunami alert for areas along the Tanon Strait between Negros and the neighboring island of Cebu.
That's a notch below the highest tsunami alert of level 3, which requires evacuation of the affected areas, a spokeswoman for the institute said.
She said the institute was advising people to watch out for unusual waves and to stay away from the shoreline.
No tsunami warning was issued for the wider Pacific region and there was no tsunami threat to Hawaii, the Pacific
Tsunami Warning Center said.
The earthquake occurred in the ocean at a depth of 46.6 kilometers (29 miles), according to the USGS.
The Philippines is situated in the so-called Ring of Fire, an arc of fault lines circling the Pacific Basin that is prone to frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
At the Circle Inn Hotel in the city of Bacolod, which is on Negros but not on the coast nearest the quake's epicenter, a receptionist said the quake lasted between three and five minutes.
"We felt the shaking," the receptionist said. "The guests all exited the building. But all the people here are okay."
There was no damage to the hotel, the receptionist said.