Strongest earthquake in 25 years hits Taiwan, leaving thousands without power

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Key Points
  • A major earthquake has struck just off the eastern coast of Taiwan.
  • The earthquake knocked out power in several parts of Taiwan’s capital and collapsed buildings in another city.
  • It also sparked tsunami warnings for the islands of southern Japan and the Philippines.

A powerful earthquake off the coast of Taiwan has rocked Taipei, knocking out power in several parts of the capital and sparking a tsunami warning for the islands of southern Japan and the Philippines.

Taiwan television stations showed footage of some collapsed buildings in Hualien, near the quake’s epicentre, and the media reported some people were trapped.

A five-storey building in Hualien appeared heavily damaged with the first floor collapsing and leaving the rest leaning at a 45-degree angle.

Wednesday’s magnitude 7.2 earthquake could be felt as far as Shanghai, according to a Reuters witness.

The earthquake’s epicenter was just off the eastern coastline of Taiwan Island, Taiwan’s central weather administration said.

Japan issued an evacuation advisory for the coastal areas of the southern prefecture of Okinawa.

Source: SBS News

Japan’s Meteorological Agency (JMA) forecast a tsunami of up to three meters for Japan’s southwestern coast.

A 30cm tsunami reached Yonaguni Island at 11:18 AEDT, the JMA said.

Japan’s Self Defense Force has sent planes into the area to gather information about the tsunami impact around the Okinawa region. It is also preparing shelters for evacuees if necessary.

The Philippines Seismology Agency also issued a warning for residents in coastal areas of several provinces, urging them to evacuate to higher ground.

In this image taken from footage run by TVBS, a partially collapsed building is seen in Hualien, eastern Taiwan, on Wednesday, 3 April 2024. Source: AAP / A?

The earthquake was felt in Fuzhou, Xiamen, Quanzhou and Ningde in China’s Fujian province, according to Chinese state media.

Taiwan’s earthquake monitoring agency measured the quake as magnitude 7.2 while the US Geological Survey put it at 7.4. It struck about 18km south-southwest of Hualien and was about 35km deep.

Multiple aftershocks were felt in Taipei in the hour after the initial quake.

Taiwan’s high-speed rail operator said no damage or injuries were reported on its trains but noted that trains would be delayed while it carried out inspections.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing had evacuated factory areas, Bloomberg News reported.

Taiwan’s official central news agency said the earthquake was the biggest to hit the island since 1999 when a 7.6 magnitude tremor killed around 2400 people.

The article is in Romanian

Tags: Strongest earthquake years hits Taiwan leaving thousands power

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