7.3 magnitude earthquake rocks Taiwan, collapsing buildings

At least two buildings were partially collapsed when a 7.3-magnitude quake struck the eastern coast of Taiwan at 7.58am on Wednesday.

The quake’s epicentre, is in waters about 18km south of the eastern county of Hualien and 138km from Taipei, according to the Central Weather Bureau. The shock was felt across the island, including Taipei.

Tsunami warnings have been issued on the island as well as in mainland China, the Philippines and Japan.

A magnitude 7.2 earthquake rocked Hualien City. Photo: Facebook/基督教台東興起教會

The number of casualties was not immediately known.

Local media footage showed that buildings shook violently for a minute before crashing to the ground, while residents ran screaming.

The impact of the earthquake could be felt in Japan and off the east coast of mainland China, including in Shanghai, Suzhou, Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Shantou.

Subways in Taipei were halted, students evacuated from schools and part of the southern Hualien were subjected to power outages, Taiwan local media reported.

Aftershocks with magnitude up to 7 were expected in the next few days, the Central Weather Bureau said.

South China Morning Post

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