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4 Lives Lost in Taiwan’s Most Powerful Earthquake in Over Two Decades

Taiwan Earthquake 4 Dead Strongest in 25 Years

On Wednesday, Taiwan was hit by a powerful 7.4-magnitude earthquake, resulting in the loss of four lives, numerous injuries, and the destruction of many buildings. This is the strongest tremor the island has experienced in the past 25 years.

The earthquake occurred at approximately 8 a.m. local time (8 p.m. Tuesday ET) at a depth of roughly 21 miles, as reported by the U.S. Geological Survey. The location was approximately 11 miles south-southwest of Hualien City on the east coast of the island.

According to Taiwan’s fire department, Reuters reported that tragically, four individuals lost their lives and over 50 people sustained injuries.

Tsunami warnings were issued in Taiwan, Japan, and the Philippines following the earthquake, but were later lifted. According to the U.S. Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, the tsunami threat from this earthquake has now passed, although national authorities may still provide their own updates.

According to the fire department, a significant number of buildings, primarily in the eastern county of Hualien, near the epicenter of the earthquake, have collapsed, totaling at least 26. The organization mentioned that it was actively involved in the rescue operation, aiming to save approximately 20 individuals who were trapped.

A video circulating on social media captured a striking scene of a building, seemingly nine stories tall, that had partially collapsed and was left standing at an unusual angle. There was another building that seemed to have five floors and was in a similar location.

The semiofficial Central News Agency of Taiwan claimed that the earthquake was felt throughout the entire island. The agency claimed that the metro systems in Taichung, Kaohsiung, and Taipei, the capital, were suspended.

Taiwan’s Central Weather Administration reports that aftershocks from the earthquake, the largest of which measured 6.5, caused power outages for around 87,000 households. The initial earthquake’s magnitude was recorded by the agency at 7.2.

According to seismology official Wu Chien-fu, the recent earthquake in Taiwan is the strongest one since 1999, which tragically claimed the lives of approximately 2,400 individuals.

TSMC, a major player in Taiwan’s semiconductor manufacturing industry, assured that its safety systems were functioning properly. As a precautionary measure, certain fabrication plants were evacuated.

The company stated that all personnel are safe and those who were evacuated are now starting to return to their workplaces. “The company is currently in the process of confirming the details of the impact.”

Earlier on Wednesday, authorities in Japan issued a tsunami warning and ordered the evacuation of coastal areas in the southern prefecture of Okinawa, cautioning residents about the possibility of waves reaching heights of up to 3 meters (approximately 10 feet). By late morning, the largest wave recorded was 30 centimeters (approximately 12 inches) on the Japanese island of Yonaguni, which is in close proximity to Taiwan.

Parts of the Philippines were also issued a tsunami warning and evacuation orders.

Reports of tremors were also observed in other parts of the region, as mentioned by social media users in Fujian, a province located on China’s southeast coast, opposite Taiwan. Online videos also captured the sight of chandeliers gently swaying in various cities across China, such as Shanghai and Hangzhou.

In Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Observatory has received over 100 reports of tremors, with descriptions comparing the vibrations to the passing of light trucks.


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