Monday 19 September 2022

Magnitude 6.8 Earthquake in Taiwan kills at least one.

The Taiwan Central Weather Bureau reported a Magnitude 6.8 Earthquake at a depth of 7.0 km in Taitung County, Taiwan, slightly before 2.45 pm local time (slightly before 7.45 am GMT) on Sunday 18 September 2022. The event is reported to have killed at least one person, with several more injured, and to have caused the collapse of a three story building in Hualien and a bridge in Yuli, as well as damage to numerous other structures.

Rescue workers pulling a five-year-old girl from a collapsed building in Hualien City, Taiwan, following a Magnitude 6.8 Earthquake on Sunday 18 September 2022. AP.

Taiwan has a complex tectonic setting, lying on the boundary between the Eurasian and Philippine Plates, with the Eurasian Plate being subducted beneath the Philippine Plate in the South and the Philippine Plate being subducted beneath the Eurasian in the East. Subduction is not a smooth process even in simple settings, with plates typically sticking together as pressure from tectonic expansion elsewhere builds up, then suddenly breaking apart and shifting abruptly, causing Earthquakes.

The motion of the tectonic plates beneath Taiwan. The University of Memphis.

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