Hundreds missing and 4 killed in Taiwan after massive natural disaster

10 February, 2018, 09:47 | Author: Bert Pena
  • More than 140 people missing after Taiwan earthquake

"Rescuers will seize the "golden 72 hours of rescue time" to make an all-out effort for rescue", he added.

A total of 12 people have been confirmed dead, of whom four are from the Chinese mainland, five from Taiwan, one from the Philippines and two from Canada.

"A 6.4-magnitude quake hit the popular eastern tourist city of Hualien late Tuesday, leaving a handful of buildings badly damaged €" some of them leaning at terrifying angles €" as well as roads torn up and hundreds sheltering in local schools and a stadium.

Workers placed steel beams to stabilize a dangerously tilted building while rescuers on the other side tried to pull survivors to safety today, more than a day after an quake shook Taiwan's east coast, killing at least nine people. Ongoing tremors are also hampering the rescue effort.

"The rescue mission was difficult as space is narrow but rescuers continued to work hard and finally found the Canadian couple", a government statement said.

Other buildings slanted at alarming degrees and rescuers used ladders, ropes and cranes to move residents to safety.

Meanwhile, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen took to Facebook to reassure her people.

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Bridges and some highways along Taiwan's east coast were closed pending inspections.

"We're putting a priority on Hualien people being able to return home to check on their loved ones", Hsu said.

"We have to confirm that unfortunately she was not able to survive the strong natural disaster in Hualien", he said, adding Philippine labor officials had already informed the next of kin.

After the magnitude 6.0 quake struck 18.3 kilometers northeast of Hualien County hall at a shallow depth of 10 kilometers, an intensity level of 7 was felt in Hualien County for a full 70 seconds, causing multiple buildings to collapse, trapping many inside as they slept.

Taiwan's location along one of the many seismic faults that encircles the Pacific Ocean means the country frequently experiences earthquakes. A quake two years ago collapsed an apartment complex in southern Taiwan, killing 115 people.

Five people were later found guilty over the disaster, including the developer and two architects, for building an inadequate structure.

Taiwan experiences frequent earthquakes although a lot of them are minor.

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