Magnitude 7.2 earthquake hits Taiwan, strongest tremor registered in 25 years

Magnitude 7.2 earthquake hits Taiwan
Screengrab of the moment when an earthquake hit Taiwan. Photo Courtesy: Screengrab from the viral video shared on X

An earthquake measuring 7.2 on the Richter Scale hit Taiwan on Wednesday, triggering tsunami warning on the island and neighbouring nations.

The epicenter of the quake was 25 km south-southeast of Hualien County Hall, with a shallow focal depth of 15.5 km,  the Central Weather Administration (CWA) reported as quoted by Taiwan News.

As per the United States Geological Survey website, the magnitude of the quake was 7.4 on the Richter Scale.

The quake’s intensity registered a 6+ in Hualien County and 5+ in Yilan County and Miaoli County. An intensity level of 5- was recorded in Taichung, Changhua County, Hsinchu County, Nantou County, Taoyuan, New Taipei, and Taipei, reported Taiwan News.

According to reports, several buildings collapsed in Hualien city.

The latest earthquake is reportedly the strongest one recorded in the last 25 years.

The extent of the damage caused by the earthquake is still not clear.

Several videos currently trending on social media showed houses in various parts of the country were damaged following the quake.

Two buildings in Hualien City were tilting at severe angles after the quake, one of which is on the intersection of Zhongshan and Chongqing roads, reported Taipei Times.

Emergency responders are currently trying to rescue people from the buildings.

“The earthquake is close to land and it’s shallow. It’s felt all over Taiwan and offshore islands… It’s the strongest in 25 years,” Wu Chien Fu, the director of Taipei’s Seismology Centre, was quoted as saying by BBC.

Meanwhile, the Taiwan High Speed Rail (THSR) network has suspended its service following the quake.

In 1999, a 7.6 magnitude earthquake hit Taiwan and killed 2.400 people and damaged 5,000 buildings.