Powerful Earthquake Strikes Taiwan, Killing at Least 1

HONG KONG — A powerful earthquake struck southeastern Taiwan on Sunday afternoon, killing at least one person, toppling at least one building and causing shaking that was felt across the island.

The quake was centered in Taitung County and registered a preliminary magnitude of 6.8, Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau said. Its epicenter was shallow at about six miles below the earth’s surface, the United States Geological Survey reported, meaning a greater possibility of damage than a deeper earthquake.

The Japan Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami advisory for some of the country’s southern islands lying east of Taiwan. The advisory was later lifted, with no reports of significant tsunami damage.

A worker at a cement factory in the town of Yuli died after equipment collapsed on him during the earthquake, Taiwan’s state-run Central News Agency said. Emergency crews were able to rescue four people who had been trapped in a building that collapsed in Yuli.

A train derailed and the roof of a platform collapsed at Dongli Station in Hualien County, President Tsai Ing-wen of Taiwan said in a message on Facebook. No passengers were injured. Some bridges were damaged and water and electrical supply was cut to some places. Disaster relief work “is in full swing,” she wrote.

“There is a possibility of aftershocks in the future,” Ms. Tsai added. “I would like to appeal to the people of Taiwan to remain vigilant.”

Taiwan sits near the boundaries of several tectonic plates, and their collisions cause frequent earthquakes. A magnitude-6.4 earthquake that struck on Saturday night was also centered in Taitung County, the Central Weather Bureau said. No major damage from it was reported on Saturday.

Amy Chang Chien and John Liu contributed reporting from Taipei, Taiwan.


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