Strong earthquake rattles northern Philippines


A strong earthquake rattled the northern Philippines early Saturday, but there were no reports of damages or injuries, US and Filipino seismologists said.

The 5.7-magnitude quake's epicentre was 30 kilometres (20 miles) south of the Batan Islands and some 225 kilometres north of the archipelago's largest island, Luzon, the United States Geological Survey said.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology put the quake's magnitude at 5.2, with the epicentre 32 kilometres northeast of Basco town in Batan.

Basco residents felt some swaying, but there were no reports of damage or casualties, and a tsunami warning was not issued, the institute said.

The quake struck at 6.40 am local time and at a depth of 10 kilometres, the USGS said. The Philippine institute put the depth at 29 kilometres.

The archipelago nation, made up of more than 7,000 islands, sits on the Pacific "Ring of Fire" where continental plates collide, causing frequent seismic and volcanic activity. (AFP)