An earthquake in Taiwan has destroyed houses and killed at least seven people. It was the strongest in the last 25 years –

An earthquake in Taiwan has destroyed houses and killed at least seven people. It was the strongest in the last 25 years –
An earthquake in Taiwan has destroyed houses and killed at least seven people. It was the strongest in the last 25 years –

At the largest earthquake in Taiwan in at least 25 years on Wednesday, April 3, 7 people died, 736 were injured and 77 were trapped in highway tunnels and collapsed buildings. The incident occurred at 7:58 a.m. local time, when people were getting ready for work and school. The earthquake had a magnitude of 7.2 on the Richter scale (some sources say as high as 7.7). The details were reported by the Reuters agency.

All the dead were in Hualien County and included three tourists who were killed by falling rocks in the popular tourist Taroko Gorge. Falling rocks also killed a truck driver in front of the Suhua Expressway tunnel on the east coast.

Earthquake in Taiwan

The tremors caused by the earthquake were felt throughout the island and in some parts of mainland China and Japan. Aftershocks were felt in the capital city of Taipei, with more than fifty recorded. The official Central News Agency said the quake was the biggest since a 7.6-magnitude earthquake in 1999 that killed about 2,400 people and damaged or destroyed fifty thousand buildings.

The epicenter of the earthquake was located at a depth of 15.5 kilometers, 18 kilometers south of the city of Hualien in a relatively sparsely populated area. Due to the strength of the tremors, a tsunami warning was subsequently issued for southern Japan and the Philippines, which was later withdrawn.

Footage from the scene shows many buildings with apparently seriously disturbed statics. Massive landslides also occurred in some areas. In Taipei, strong tremors forced a brief shutdown of the subway, but most of the six lines have since resumed service. Rail links to the area are expected to reopen on Thursday.

According to Taiwan’s air force, six F-16 fighter jets, which are often deployed to meet Chinese military aircraft, were slightly damaged at the main base, but are expected to return to service shortly. Power company Taipower said most electricity was restored shortly after the quake, with the island’s two nuclear power plants unaffected.

The chipmaker evacuated employees

“Right now, the most important thing, the highest priority, is saving people,” said President Lai Ching-te during a speech in front of one of the collapsed buildings in Hualien. Strong aftershocks of up to 7 on the Richter scale are expected at least until the end of the week.

Firm Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturingwhich is a major supplier of chips to Apple and Nvidia, said it had to evacuate some manufacturing plants. “To ensure the safety of employees, some factories have been evacuated in accordance with company procedures,” she said in a press statement, later adding that employees had begun returning to work.

In Japan, the meteorological agency put the quake at 7.7 on the Richter scale and said several small tsunami waves of less than half a meter hit parts of southern Okinawa Prefecture. In the Philippines, seismologists warned residents of coastal areas in several provinces to move to higher ground.

Taiwan is home to about 23 million people, most of whom live in industrial cities on its west coast, including the capital. Earthquakes regularly shake the island due to its location in the Pacific Ring of Fire, which stretches around the edge of the Pacific Ocean and causes massive seismic and volcanic activity from Indonesia to Chile.

The article is in Czech

Tags: earthquake Taiwan destroyed houses killed people strongest years VTM .cz


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