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Taiwan: Strong Earthquake Topples Building, Derails Train, Traps Hundreds Of Tourists

Taiwan: Strong Earthquake Topples Building, Derails Train, Traps Hundreds Of Tourists

No deaths were reported after the earthquake. More than 7,000 households were reported without power in Yuli town and water pipes were also damaged.

A strong earthquake struck Taiwan
A strong earthquake struck Taiwan PTI

A strong earthquake struck Taiwan on Sunday, toppling a building, derailing a train, and stranding hundreds of tourists in the mountains. 

The Sunday's earthquake measured 6.8 on richter scale and it was the largest of the aftershocks following the 6.4 magnitude earthquake on Saturday.

The epicentre of the earthquake was the town of Chishang and much of the damage appeared to be north of it, said Taiwan's Central Weather Bureau.

A 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, said Taiwan's Central News Agency. 

The 70-year-old owner of the building and his wife were rescued first, but it took longer to get to a 39-year-old woman and her 5-year-old daughter. A photo released by the Hualien city government showed the girl lying on a blanket and being handed down a metal ladder from the top of the debris by helmeted rescue workers in orange uniforms. 

The top two stories of the building were left sprawled across a small street and onto the other side, with electricity wires pulled down by the fallen structure.

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

Police and firefighters rushed to a bridge collapse on a two-lane road in what appeared to be a rural part of the same town where three people and one or more vehicles may have fallen off, according to media reports.

Also in Yuli, a landslide trapped nearly 400 tourists on a mountain famous for the orange day lilies that blanket its slopes this time of year, the Central News Agency said. They had no electricity and a weak cellphone signal.

Debris from a falling canopy on a platform at Dongli station in Fuli town, which is between Yuli and the epicenter at Chishang, hit a passing train, derailing six cars, the Central News Agency said, citing the railway administration. None of the 20 passengers were injured. 

The shaking was felt at the north end of the island in the capital, Taipei. In Taoyuan city, west of Taipei and 210 kilometers (130 miles) north of the epicenter, a man was injured by a ceiling collapse on the 5th floor of a sports center. 

The Japan Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami advisory for several southern Japanese islands near Taiwan, but later lifted it. 

(With AP inputs)

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