MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – All dive sites in the municipality of Mabini in Batangas will be off limits to divers this Holy Week after twin earthquakes rocked the province over the weekend, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) said on Monday, April 10.
The PCG sent personnel from its Batangas station to ensure the local government unit (LGU) and divers comply with the temporary diving ban.
“We have two teams that would monitor compliance of the LGU,” said PCG spokesperson Commander Armand Balilo.
He added the PCG has been patrolling the dive spots since Sunday, April 9.
While diving activities are prohibited, swimming is still allowed in the dive capital of Batangas, he explained.
The Holy Week break is normally a peak season in Mabini town, a known diving spot for local and foreign tourists.
A series of earthquakes hit Batangas last weekend, with magnitudes between 5 and 6. The earthquakes were apparently part of an “earthquake swarm,” events where a local area is hit by a sequence of many quakes in a relative short period of time, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology. (IN PHOTOS: Earthquake causes panic, damage in Batangas resort)
Balilo said divers would be arrested if they continue diving attempts during the ban. “Once arrested, they will be turned over to the local government.” – Rappler.com