Quake halts search at Philippines landslide disaster site

“We ordered them (rescuers) to go up to a safer area,” Apex Mines official Ferdinand Doble told a news conference.Rescue efforts had not resumed more than 30 minutes later as drones were flown to check for signs of potential secondary landslides that could endanger the lives of the rescuers, he added.The quake epicentre is about 150 kilometres (90 miles) north of the landslide site.On Friday rescuers found a three-year-old girl alive after nearly 60 hours under the rubble, but mostly they have only been finding bodies.”We’re still hoping to save more people even after four days,” Davao de Oro provincial disaster chief Randy Loy told the news conference.However “we can’t really guarantee their chances of survival” after 48 hours, he said, adding 474 rescuers were deployed at the Masara landslide.Military rescuers were set to employ specialised equipment, their commander, Brigadier-General Ronnie Babac, told the news conference.These include thermal scanners that can detect signs of life beneath the rubble as well as specialised “snake cameras”, also known as borescopes designed to peek into confined spaces.

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