A Dutch researcher is said to have predicted that The Big One, the magnitude 7.2 earthquake that may be caused by the West Valley Fault, will strike Metro Manila and neighboring areas between February 24 and March 8, 2017. This is based on articles that have surfaced online and have gone viral.
It was shared by Facebook pages “Library of Most Controversial Files,” gaining almost 2,600 shares, and “The Summit Express,” with its post gaining almost 1,500 shares, as of writing.
However, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS-DOST) has issued a warning against spreading such predictions.
“We cannot predict when or where an earthquake will happen. There is no reliable technology in the world that can confidently predict the date, time and location of large earthquakes,” PHIVOLCS said in a Facebook post on February 24.
What we do is prepare earthquake scenarios of hazards and impacts to be used as guide for mitigation, preparedness and response,” PHIVOLCS added.
They also call on netizens to refrain from sharing the prediction messages.
“Please avoid sharing these messages because your friends and relatives will think that you believe these messages are true and they will take your word for it,” PHIVOLCS cautioned.
According to the debunked article, the Dutch researcher, revealed to be a certain Frank Hoogerbeets, said that this is the same researcher who predicted the quake that happened in Surigao on February 10. Hoogerbeets has also reportedly said that the planetary alignments would trigger seismic activities, probably hitting the Philippines. He further claimed that instead of the estimated magnitude 7.0 to 7.3 earthquake, Metro Manila and neighboring towns will experience a magnitude 8.0 or more quake.
Hoogerbeets was called as the “quake mystic” in the article published by websites like thenationalhub.net and thesummitexpress.com. The said researcher talked about his earthquake warning in a YouTube video.
TheSummitExpress also talked about how the Filipinos have grown alarmed over the sightings of rare animal species by the sea, such as the oar fish and what was thought of as a dead sea cow.
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