Magnitude 7.2 earthquake strikes Taiwan (VIDEOS) — RT World News

The chief seismologist said that the island was exposed to the strongest earthquakes in 25 years

A 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck off Taiwan's east coast on Wednesday morning, damaging buildings and issuing a tsunami warning.

Officials said the quake occurred off the coast of Hualien County at 7:58 a.m. local time and was felt on the island, including its capital, Taipei.

Wu Xinfu, head of the Seismic Center of the Central Weather Administration, said that this is the strongest earthquake to hit Taiwan since 1999. Reuters, citing the Taiwan Fire Department, reported that at least one person was killed and more than 50 others were injured. Local media said some people may still be trapped in their homes.

Many high-rise buildings partially collapsed. In other areas, the earthquake caused landslides.

Videos posted on social media show multi-storey buildings leaning dangerously to one side.

Schools and work were suspended in Hualien, as were high-speed rail services in several cities.

The quake was also felt in many cities in mainland China, including Shanghai, according to the Global Times.

Tsunami warnings were issued in southern Japan and the northern regions of the Philippines. Naha Airport in Okinawa, Japan has suspended all flights.

Japan's Kyodo News reported that small tsunami waves reached the southern islands of Yonaguni, Ishigaki and Miyako. She said the country's meteorological services initially predicted a tsunami of up to 3 metres, but later lowered the forecast to 1 metre.

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