WORLD

TAIWAN EARTHQUAKE STRONGEST TO HIT ISLAND IN 25 YEARS – SEISMOLOGY CENTRE

03/04/2024 05:29 PM

BEIJING, April 3 (Bernama-Sputnik) -- A 7.3-magnitude earthquake that struck off the coast of Taiwan has become the strongest to hit the island in 25 years, Wu Chien-fu, the director of the Central Weather Administration's Seismology Centre, said on Wednesday, reported Sputnik. 

"This earthquake became the strongest in 25 years after the shake of Sept 21 (1999). A 7.3-magnitude earthquake took place then," Wu was quoted by Taiwan's Central News Agency (CNA) as saying.

The island usually experiences two to four quakes a year, usually of magnitude 6-7, but rarely higher, the official added.

The Taiwanese Armed Forces are taking part in rescue operations on the island, the Taiwanese Defence Ministry said on Wednesday, adding that a response centre had been established to monitor the situation and dispatch forces to provide assistance.

Taiwanese media reported that a plastics factory building had collapsed in Taiwan’s New Taipei City in the country’s north, without providing information on casualties.

As of 9.30 in the morning (1:30 GMT), power outages had been reported in 87,132 of the Taiwanese households, Taiwanese broadcaster Sanlih reported, citing the Taipower energy company. The earthquake caused a power outage at the substation, breaking the feeder, the broadcaster reported, adding that the system was restoring stability.

Radiation infrastructure facilities, including ones of the Taiwan Power Company, continued to operate normally following the quake, the Taiwanese Nuclear Safety Commission said.

Meanwhile, traffic on several railway lines in southeastern China was restricted Wednesday because of the disaster, causing delays in the departure of passenger trains, China Central Television reported.

Beijing is closely monitoring the situation in Taiwan, stating its readiness to provide necessary assistance to the victims, Zhu Fenglian, a spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the Chinese State Council, said.

In 1999, an earthquake known as the 921 Jiji earthquake, struck central Taiwan, killing more than 2,400 people, injuring more than 11,300 and leaving about 100,000 homeless.

On Wednesday morning, a series of powerful earthquakes were recorded off Taiwan. A spokesperson for the Japan Meteorological Agency said the strongest earthquake had a magnitude of 7.7. It was followed by a 6.6-magnitude earthquake and a 6.3-magnitude earth tremor, according to data from the Japan Meteorological Agency. Social media users posted videos on X, formerly Twitter, showing that several buildings in Taiwan tilted and were partially destroyed.

-- BERNAMA-SPUTNIK                         

 

 


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