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3 dead, 221 rescued after 6.4-magnitude earthquake hits Taiwan

HIGHLIGHTS

• The quake struck at around 4am when most people were asleep. It was a shallow quake, struck about 10km underground

• A 10-day-old infant, a 55-year-old woman and a 50-year-old man have been killed

• Cranes were being used to search darkened parts of the structure for survivors

 

TAIPEI (Taiwan): Rescuers in the southern Taiwanese city of Tainan pulled out 221 people and three dead from a residential high-rise complex that collapsed when a shallow 6.4-magnitude earthquake struck before dawn on Saturday, leaving still others trapped inside.


Firefighters and soldiers scrambled with ladders, cranes and other equipment to the building that folded like an accordion in a pile of rubble and twisted metal and extracted dazed survivors.

The emergency response centre told The Associated Press that three people were killed – a 10-day-old infant, a 55-year-old woman and a 50-year-old man. Taiwan’s official news agency said the infant and the man were pulled out of a 17-storey Wei Guan residential building and that both were later declared dead. The agency said 256 people were believed to have been living in 92 households.

Dozens more people have been rescued or safely evacuated from a market and a seven-floor building that was badly damaged, the Central News Agency reported.

A bank building also careened, but no injuries were reported, it said.

Most people were caught asleep when temblor struck at about 4 am local time (2000 GMT Friday). It was located some 22 miles (36 kilometres) southeast of Yujing, and struck about 6 miles (10 kilometres) underground, according to the US Geological Survey.

A bank building also careened, but no injuries were reported, it said.

Most people were caught asleep when temblor struck at about 4 am local time (2000 GMT Friday). It was located some 22 miles (36 kilometres) southeast of Yujing, and struck about 6 miles (10 kilometres) underground, according to the US Geological Survey.

Men in camouflage, apparently military personnel, marched into one area of collapse carrying large shovels.

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