A magnitude 5.5 earthquake jolted Leyte and surrounding areas early this morning.

According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), the quake struck at 5:19 a.m. Its epicenter was traced 11.33ºN, 124.54ºE  – 8 km S 52ºE of Leyte with a depth of 9 kilometers.

Phivolcs said the quake was tectonic in origin.

The quake was first detected to be of magnitude 5.7 but was reduced to magnitude 5.5.

Intensity V was felt in Leyte, Kananga, Capoocan, Pastrana, Tacloban City, and Ormoc City in Leyte.

Intensity IV  was felt in Palo, Dulag, Babatngon, Alang-Alang and Palompon, Leyte, as well as in Mandaue City and Cebu City in Cebu, and Naval, Biliran.

Lapu-Lapu City in Cebu and Lawaan, Eastern Samar were also shaken by Intensity III.

Phivolcs said aftershocks are to be expected.  (RJ Espartinez)