Death toll rises to nine in natural disaster that toppled buildings in Taiwan

Death toll rises to nine in natural disaster that toppled buildings in Taiwan

The death toll from the magnitude 6.0 quake that shook the nation on Tuesday rose to 10 as of press time last night as rescuers continued their efforts to locate victims trapped in the debris of collapsed or partially collapsed buildings in Hualien City.

The tremors were felt all along Taiwan but Hualien was worst hit by the natural disaster.

Eight people were still unaccounted for in Hualien on Thursday afternoon, all of whom were believed to have been living or temporarily staying at the now badly damaged and tilting Yun Men Tsui Ti building, officials said.

Noting the support received from the people of Taiwan during the March 2011 quake and tsunami disaster in northeastern Japan, Abe said in the message that Japan "wants to give whatever assistance is needed".

More than 220 aftershocks followed the main quake, including a 5.7 quake late on Wednesday.

China Central Television reported that more than 40 of the missing people were trapped in the Yunmen Cuiti building, a 12-story apartment building.

As of 14:00 Thursday, 25 people had remained missing.

The national fire agency said three of those killed were Chinese nationals from the mainland.

Tsai said she "ordered search and rescue workers not to give up on any opportunity to save people, while keeping their own safety in mind".


A magnitude 5.7 natural disaster shook the already devastated town in the early hours of Thursday, Taiwan's official news agency Central News Agency said, the largest in a series of aftershocks.

Taiwan's fire and rescue service said one employee died after parts of the Marshal Hotel collapsed in Hualien county and another perished in a nearby residence.

Huang made the comment after President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) expressed appreciation earlier that day on her Twitter account for the expressions of sympathy and blessings extended by countries around the world, including the United States, Japan, China, and the European Union in the wake of the quake.

A 60-year-old woman said the quake destroyed a cupboard, chest of drawers, and TV set in her home.

The government said 17 foreigners sought medical treatment for minor injuries.

On Wednesday, Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council said the island had enough manpower and resources for the rescue efforts and it did not need outside help. In fact, hit roughly the same region just northeast of the island on Sunday, and magnitude 4.5 or higher have shaken the city since Tuesday's quake.

More than 100 people were killed in a quake in southern Taiwan in 2016, and in 1999, a quake of magnitude 7.6 killed more than 2,000 people.

Earthquakes are not uncommon for residents in Hualien but the 6.4-magnitude quake, one of the strongest in recent years, came as a shock.

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