Strong quake hits off Taiwan’s eastern coast

TAIPEI: A strong earthquake struck off the coast of eastern Taiwan on Monday (Jan 3) evening, the Central Weather Bureau said, with shaking felt in the capital Taipei but no immediate reports of damage.

The weather bureau said the quake measured 6.0 in magnitude and hit at the relatively shallow depth of 19km. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) put the magnitude higher at 6.2.

The epicenter was given in the sea 56 km east of the coastal city of Hualien.

The weather bureau said no immediate reports of damage had come in.

An AFP reporter in Taipei said buildings swayed violently when the tremor struck during the rush hour commute at 5.46 pm.

"The shaking lasted for a good 20 seconds with the ground moving left and right," the reporter said.

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Taiwan is regularly hit by earthquakes as the island lies near the junction of two tectonic plates.

Artmotion Asia

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