A strong 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck the northern Philippines on Wednesday, the United States Seismological Institute (USGS) announced.
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The tremor was recorded at 8:43 a.m. local time (0043 GMT) in the mountainous province of Abra on the main island of Luzon, according to the USGS.
In the town of Dolores, located near the epicenter, terrified residents ran from their homes and the windows of the local market were shattered, local police commander Edwin Sergio told AFP.
"The earthquake was very strong," said Sergio, adding that cracks had appeared in the building of the police station.
Buildings shook even in the capital Manila, located more than 300 km away.
The Philippines is regularly hit by earthquakes due to its position on the “Ring of Fire,” an arc of intense seismic activity that circles the Pacific Ocean through Japan and Southeast Asia.