The 6.8 quake was the strongest of dozens of tremors recorded on the island’s southeast coast since Saturday morning, when a 6.4 quake hit the same area. No serious injuries were reported at first.
Most of the damage appeared to be north of the epicenter, which Taiwan’s Central Bureau of Meteorology put at the town of Chishang, at a relatively shallow depth of 7 kilometers (4 miles).
The earthquake has been preceded by a series of tremors during the last hours, including one of 5.9 during the day on Saturday. Also, they have recorded about ten aftershocksincluding one of magnitude 5.4 on the open Richter scale.
Tsai has called on the population to be alert to the danger of seismic activity, after the damage suffered by infrastructure and buildings in Hualien and Taitung, including the collapse of two bridges in Hualien, as reported by the Taiwanese news agency CNA. .
The Hualien County Disaster Response Center has said it has rescued three people after a bridge collapse, while firefighters have rescued another four people from a collapsed building. Some 400 tourists are being evacuated from Chike Mountain after power lines fell due to several landslides.
Also, more than 7,000 households in Hualien have lost power due to the earthquake, while other cities, including Taipei, have suffered power cuts. On the other hand, the train has derailed in Hualien due to the earthquake, with no information on victims.