RISK ASSESSMENT. Ilocos Sur Governor Jerry Singson leads the risk assessment and analysis on the extent of damage caused by the magnitude 7 earthquake last July 27, 2022. On Friday (July 29), Singson ordered the lifting of work suspension both in the public and private sectors. (Photo courtesy of the Provincial Government of Ilocos Sur)

LAOAG CITY – Ilocos Sur Governor Jeremias “Jerry” Singson lifted Friday his earlier order indefinitely suspending work both in public and private sectors after a careful assessment of the structural integrity of buildings hit by a magnitude 7 earthquake in Abra and nearby provinces.

In his two-page executive order, Singson said a skeleton workforce will be allowed until July 31 while all offices can be back to a 100-percent capacity by Monday, August 1.

But prior to resuming operation, the governor clarified that the concerned sectors must first get a clearance from the city of municipal engineering office stating that their structures, buildings, or workplaces are physically fit for work activities.

"All operations in the public and private sectors shall be on one hundred operations on-site capacity starting August 1,” read the order signed on Friday.

According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), an Intensity VI was felt in Ilocos Sur on Wednesday with a series of aftershocks that could occur for several days and even months because the magnitude 7 tremor in neighboring Abra province is considered a major earthquake.

Aside from a lone casualty identified as an 88-year-old woman that was hit by a landslide and the 34 residents and tourists injured, the Provincial Risk Reduction and Management Council reported 460 houses affected, 14 of which were totally destroyed. These include the partially damaged Bantay watch tower and the Vigan Cathedral, both considered as important heritage sites in Ilocos Sur. (PNA)