COTABATO, Philippines, July 24 (Xinhua) -- Telecommunication lines in some areas in the southern Philippines were cut out following the three strong earthquakes that struck the south region on early Saturday.
Philippine Long Distance Telecommunication Company's services were temporarily cut out in the southern city of General Santos and nearby areas following two aftershocks between 7.3 and 7.6 magnitudes.
Three major earthquakes struck the southern part of the Philippines on Saturday morning, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) reported. The quakes happened in succession, with the first striking at 6:08 a.m. The next two tremors happened at 6:51 a.m. and 7:15 a.m.
Phivolcs chief Renato Solidum said that the first earthquake, which was tectonic in origin, had a magnitude of 6.9.
Asked why the USGS's measurements were much higher than that of Phivolcs, Solidum explained that the two agencies use different types of measuring earthquake magnitudes.
The quakes were felt in the cities of Zamboanga, Pagadian, Koronadal and General Santos but Officials.
A resident, named Yolly Andrias, in the southern city of Cotabato, said they were still sleeping when the strong quake awoke them. In other areas, vehicles alarm systems went on.
"We have received no reports of damage or casualties," said Marlon Macapili, a fire official of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The Philippines sits on the Pacific "Ring of Fire" where continental plates collide causing frequent seismic and volcanic activity.
The worst earthquake in the country happened on Aug. 16, 1976, after a tsunami caused by a quake killed between 5,000 and 8,000 people in the Moro Gulf region in southern Philippines.