300 still missing in aftermath of New Zealand earthquake

Posted Feb 24, 2011 by Leo Reyes
There are still around 300 people missing in the wake of a 6.3 magnitude quake that struck Christchurch, New Zealand Tuesday. The earthquake caused widespread damage to residential and commercial buildings.
The death toll has reached 98, as search and rescue operations continue.
According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in Manila, 14 of the 300 people still missing are from the Philippines. Reuters reported 226 are still missing as of Thursday.
Previous reports indicated six students from the Philippines are among those trapped in the CTV building that collapsed.
The DFA, however, did not identify the missing Philippine nationals.
Most of the missing Filipinos are "believed to be trapped under the rubble of the CTV building" in Christchurch, said Foreign Assistant Secretary J. Eduardo Malaya, who is also a DFA spokesman.
The CTV building was one of the structures that collapsed when the tremor — the deadliest to hit New Zealand since the 1931 quake that killed 256 — struck at noon on Feb. 22.
The DFA based its Feb. 24 update on reports from Filipino "community leaders" in the city, said Malaya.
Teams from quake-prone countries such as Japan and the United States used sniffer dogs and lowered microphones into piles of rubble to probe for signs of life after a 6.3 magnitude quake struck the country's second-biggest city on Tuesday, Reuters reports
"We are all propelled by a desire to find our people. We aim to find them alive," said city Mayor Bob Parker on Thursday as rescue teams failed to locate any sign of life for 24 hours and a third night of searching by floodlight lay ahead.
There were 47 bodies retrieved from the collapsed CTV building.
Relatives of the reported Filipino victims at the CTV building believe some of them are still alive after they received text messages hours after the collapsed of CTVbuilding.