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Media source: 4 dead, 98 injured in M7.2 Taiwan earthquake

Media source: 4 dead, 98 injured in M7.2 Taiwan earthquake

A powerful earthquake with a magnitude of 7.2 off the eastern coast of Taiwan on Wednesday, killing at least four people and injuring 98, while damaging buildings and roads, the Taipei-based Central News Agency reported.

The earthquake’s epicenter of the 7:58 a.m. (2358 Tuesday GMT) temblor was located in the Pacific Ocean, 25 km south-southeast of Hualien County Hall, at a depth of 15.5 km, according to the Central Weather Administration’s Seismology Center. The weather bureau said the strong quake has caused changes in water levels off the coast.

The earthquake’s intensity, which gauges the actual effect of a seismic event, was highest in Hualien, where it measured a 6+ on Taiwan’s 7-tier intensity scale.

A 6+ intensity represents shaking that makes it almost impossible to stand in place and can even throw people into the air. In Hualien County, the government there announced that offices and schools would be closed for the day due to the potential for aftershocks.

There were more than 300,000 household
s without power at one point, but it had been restored to over 70 percent of them by 9:30 a.m., the state-run Taiwan Power Co. said.

According to Taiwan Railways Corp., some train services in the affected area have been suspended due to the temblor.

Though most of the main Taipei Metro has returned to normal, there are still sections of the circular line in the Taipei suburbs where service remains suspended.

The tremor was also felt in the capital Taipei, some 170 kilometers north of Hualien. Wednesday’s quake was the strongest to shake Taiwan since the tragic 7.3-magnitude earthquake in 1999 that left more than 2,000 people dead, the report said.

Source: Kuwait News Agency