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Strong Taiwan earthquake traps people, derails train

Firefighters search for trapped victims in a collapsed residential building following earthquake in Yuli township in Hualien County, eastern Taiwan, Sept. 18, 2022. (Hualien County Fire Department via AP)
Firefighters search for trapped victims in a collapsed residential building following earthquake in Yuli township in Hualien County, eastern Taiwan, Sept. 18, 2022. (Hualien County Fire Department via AP)

A strong earthquake shakes much of Taiwan, toppling a three-story building and temporarily trapping four people inside, stranding about 400 tourists on a mountainside, and knocking part of a passenger train off its tracks.

The magnitude 6.8 quake is the largest among dozens that have rattled the island’s southeastern coast since last night, when a 6.4 quake struck the same area. There were no immediate reports of serious injuries.

Most of the damage appears to be north of the epicenter, which Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau said was in the town of Chishang at the relatively shallow depth of 7 kilometers (4 miles).

The three-story building, which had a 7-11 convenience store on the ground floor and residences on the upper ones, collapsed in nearby Yuli town, the island’s Central News Agency says.

More than 7,000 households are reported without power in Yuli, and water pipes were also damaged.

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