148 schools report damage after 6.4, 6.8 magnitude quakes strike Taiwan

Taiwan’s Ministry of Education reported that 148 schools around the country had reported damage after a series of earthquakes struck the east coast over the weekend, with two quakes over magnitude 6.

More than 140 earthquakes have shaken Taiwan since the first, a magnitude 6.4 tremblor, struck in the north of Taitung County Saturday evening. More than 70 aftershocks were felt Saturday night and Sunday before a destructive 6.8 magnitude quake struck in Chishang Township at 2:44 pm. As of early Monday morning, a total of 140 tremors had been recorded, and the shaking had not stopped. At 10:07 am, a magnitude 5.9 tremblor shook the island, and was felt as a magnitude 3 in the capital Taipei.

According to Ministry of Education statistics, as of 10:00 am Monday, 148 damage reports had been filed by schools, including 45 schools in Kaohsiung City, 37 in Hualien County, 21 in Taitung County, 10 in Pingtung County, 6 in Tainan City, 4 schools each in Taichung City and New Taipei City, 2 schools each in Yilan County, Hsinchu County, Taoyuan City, Miaoli County, Nantou County, and Yunlin County, and 1 school each in Hsinchu City and Changhua County.

Preliminary estimated damages stand at NT$22.67 million.

One of the more severely damaged schools was Chunri Elementary School in Yuli Township, Hualien County. Chunri saw a corridor and stairwell collapse. Electrical wires and water pipes were also affected, and the principal of the school announced that no classes would be held today, Monday, as repairs were being carried out.

Legislator and former Presidential Office Spokesperson Kolas Yotaka posted pictures of the damage at Chunri Elementary School to social media yesterday, and expressed relief that the earthquake had not occurred a school day.

collapsed corridor at Chunri Elementary School in Hualien County
Collapsed corridor at Chunri Elementary School, Hualien County, Taiwan, following 6.4 and 6.8 magnitude earthquakes that struck on September 17 and 18, 2022.
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