Travel bloggers and heritage conservationists talk about Visayas earthquake aftermath

By , on October 15, 2013


The sleeping town of Carmen, Bohol was the epicenter of a 7.2-magnitude earthquake early Tuesday morning.

Locals and tourists rushed out of establishments and homes to look for safe ground as the ground shook and the structures overhead began to sway and eventually collapse to give in to the violent turmoil.

PHIVOLCS has recorded 289 aftershocks as of posting.

The death toll is already at 85 and continues to rise as rescue and relief operations continue in affected provinces.

While many lives were taken and changed by this major earthquake, talks about the damages in heritage sites like Cebu and Bohol also proliferated around social media.

The government has already issued a statement via their Official Gazette, stating the following steps to address the destruction of heritage sites and historical landmarks in the said provinces:

A joint team of experts shall inspect and evaluate the damage, starting Thursday, 17 October 2013, in order to:

  1. Establish the severity of damage;
  2. Identify properties that immediately need to be secured;
  3. Draw up priorities for restoration;
  4. Estimate the amount of human and financial resources necessary; and
  5. establish important linkages with stakeholders.
  6. The Heritage Task Force, as the joint group is called, shall coordinate closely with the Church, national and local government agencies in the rescue and restoration effort.
  7. The NCCA shall provide a mobilization fund for the initial (rapid) assessment, pending the national government’s decision on the rescue and rehabilitation efforts as a whole.
  8. The culture agencies shall convene upon the return of the Heritage Task Force and submit an official report to the Office of the President.

Many travel bloggers and heritage conservationists also couldn’t help but bring their sentiments to online media.

Political pundit and now Manila Tourism Consultant Carlos “Damaso” Celdran chose to stay on the positive side to spurge restoration in Bohol.

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Celdran also called for the attention of his “bosses” Manila Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada and Vice Mayor Isko Moreno to inspect buildings in Manila to prepare for an earthquake.

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Travel blogger and photographer Ferdz Decena also posted a photo of the damaged Baclayon Church on his Twitter account.

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Decena also posted a photo of the famous Chocolate Hills of Bohol taken by Philip Pepito post-earthquake.

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Travel guide and heritage advocate Ivan Man Dy also posted a few reminders for the authorities.

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Photographer Robert Michael Poole also documented developments in Loboc, Bohol and updated the world through his Twitter account.

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UP professor, travel blogger, and Heritage Conservation Society President Ivan Henares also took his sentiments to Facebook.

(Bohol and Cebu are the only places in the Philippines with tons of heritage churches and it gets wiped out! How painful! The National Museum should declare a moratorium on any reconstruction until proper restoration plans have been made.)
(Bohol and Cebu are the only places in the Philippines with tons of heritage churches and it gets wiped out! How painful! The National Museum should declare a moratorium on any reconstruction until proper restoration plans have been made.)

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Screenshots by author.