Witnessing a 6.8 Magnitude Earthquake in Taipei

First-Hand Encounter of a Strong Earthquake in Taipei – What Should You Do?

Lex the Lion LTL

Earthquakes in Taiwan aren’t uncommon. But a strong earthquake is quite a surprise for the Taiwanese population.

Even though most of the infrastructure is earthquake-proof, a strong earthquake in Taiwan still manages to cause some damage.

In fact, in this part of the world, earthquakes are a regular occurrence.

In this particular instance, we’re talking about a recent earthquake with a magnitude of 6.8 on the richter scale.

Let’s start by knowing a little about earthquakes in general.

Earthquake in Taiwan || Why Do Earthquakes Occur?

Earthquake in Taiwan || BIGGEST Earthquake in Taiwan

Earthquake in Taiwan || My Story

Earthquake in Taiwan || How to Escape an Earthquake?

BONUS || Vocabulary Lesson

Earthquake in Taiwan || FAQs


Earthquake in Taipei || Why Do Earthquakes Occur?

Have you ever heard the term “tectonic plates“?

Here’s a mini-lesson…

Earthquake in Taipei

The earth’s outer surface (the crust) is not a continuous layer. It is made of segments that are constantly moving.

While moving it is very common for them to rub against each other and create friction.

While creating friction it also traps energy beneath the edges or borders of two tectonic plates.

When that power of movement exceeds the power of friction, one of these two things happen.

Either those plates break apart or they displace abruptly.

When these events take place, the energy that was trapped inside gets released in a wave pattern. We call these waves “Seismic Waves”.

These waves cause the earth’s surface to shake as those waves get released.

Those displacements can be multi-directional, however, the most common ones are side to side (just like Ariana Grande’s song) or they get displaced higher or lower than their original position.

This gives you a basic knowledge of the causes of an Earthquake.

Let’s now discuss one of the BIGGEST earthquakes Taiwan endured.

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Earthquake in Taipei || BIGGEST Earthquake in Taiwan…

Let’s go back in time, welcome to 1999

Introducing the “Chi Chi Earthquake”, one of the biggest earthquakes Taiwan has ever witnessed.

It started around 1:47 am local time with a magnitude of 7.7 on Richter scale. This resulted in quite some significant damage.

The casualties and the number of people injured during this calamity were an all time high. More than 2,700 people died and over 10,000 people were injured.

This earthquake is an example of a classic up-down displacement of tectonic plates.

Image credit | www.taiwandc.org

One part of the surface literally drops down due to very strong seismic waves that released when the trapped energy is being collected for a longer duration.

Many buildings and houses collapsed because of this, resulting in more than 100,000 people becoming homeless.

The Chi Chi Earthquake is regarded as one of the biggest if not the biggest earthquake in the history of Taiwan.

Now, let’s talk the recent earthquake in Taiwan.

This was not as strong as the Chi Chi Earthquake, but we for sure felt it!

It is a first-hand experience for me and here is my story…

Earthquake in Taipei || My Story

LTL Taiwan Team | Rushi
Rushi tells his story of an earthquake in Taipei

Imagine that you are sitting indoors and the sound of squeaking windows starts to grab your attention.

Slowly, the squeaking sound is accompanied with the feeling of everything shaking.

Soon you realise that it is one of the many earthquakes you get in Taiwan and you get back to your business and don’t give much attention to it.

FUN FACT | Most earthquakes aren’t even noticed or felt as they occur in their hundreds every year.

However, things start to take an unusual turn when it starts shaking with a much higher intensity. Something isn’t right

This is what most of us in Taiwan felt on 18th September 2022 when an earthquake with a 6.8 magnitude hit.

Taiwan, an island in Asia, lies upon two tectonic plates.

It is prone to earthquakes which is quite similar to Japan and other islands in the subcontinent.

The reason this earthquake made such a buzz was because of its intensity. Taiwan hadn’t faced such an earthquake in the last couple of years.

Damage Caused…

The recent earthquake measured 7.2 magnitude on the richter scale. Taiwan’s fire department shared that 146 people were injured while 1 person passed away because of the earthquake.

Earthquake in Taipei

Dongli station, located on the East side of Taiwan reported six carriages derailing with no injuries or deaths.

A building collapsed in Yuli, Hualien where people were rescued from the debris. Thankfully not a single person was injured.

Lastly, scenic parts of Taiwan also suffered some significant blows because of the Earthquake. Specifically, in Liushishi and Chike scenic areas.

More than 550 people were trapped due to minor landslides and blocked roads.

The rescuers came through and reported no injuries or deaths.

This earthquake resulted in few aftershocks that followed for a few days to come but they weren’t strong enough for people to feel.

Even though the aftershocks weren’t prominent, there was a warning issued for a potential tsunami on the island which was then canceled as the following earthquakes weren’t strong enough to trigger it.

Have you ever experienced an earthquake in Taiwan or anywhere else? Tell us your account in the comments below.

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Earthquake in Taipei || How to Escape an Earthquake?

Although escaping an earthquake might be an impossible task in severe circumstances, there are things you can do to help your chance of survival.

TOP TIP | get under table, or any structure that can protect you from anything that can fall from above you.

That being said, this can also prove to be risky, as it can also mean that you can be trapped for a while if things get worse.

IMPORTANT | If you are indoors in a building, don’t use the elevator at any cost.

You can get trapped for hours, or the elevator lines can loosen which is even worse. Make your way out from the building as safely as you can.

Remember to stay away from windows, doors or hanging lights as all of those can prove to be a threat under that situation.

Lastly, if you are outdoors, make sure you’re in an open space where there are no chimneys, power lines or trees in the vicinity that can fall off.

Once you’re in the open then you are safe for the most part.

These tips really help if you have the presence of mind and can stay calm in tough situations.

BONUS || Vocabulary Lesson

We wouldn’t be a great language school if we didn’t teach you Mandarin whilst you were here, would we?!

Here are some useful words to learn about Earthquakes in Chinese.

How many do you know? Tell us below.

EnglishChinese (Pinyin)Chinese (Hanzi)
EarthquakeDì zhèn地震
DamageSǔn hài损害
TsunamiHǎi xiào海啸
InjuryShāng hài伤害
Collapsebēngkuìle崩潰了
LandslideHuápō滑坡
Take CoverYǎnhù掩護
DebrisSuìpiàn碎片
CasualtiesShāngwáng傷亡
CrashPèngzhuàng碰撞
TyphoonTáifēng颱風
ShockwavesChōngjíbō衝擊波
Tectonic PlatesGòuzào bǎnkuài構造板塊
LandfallDēnglù登陸
Natural DisasterZìrán zāihài自然災害

That concludes our look at earthquakes in Mandarin and how a recent earthquake in Taiwan shook the island.

We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our content. Check out our blog for much more.

Earthquake in Taipei || FAQs

What is the largest earthquake in the history of Taiwan?

Earthquake Chi-Chi in 1999 was the biggest earthquake in Taiwan.

How big was the earthquake in Taiwan in 2022?

It measured 6.8 magnitude on the Richter Scale.

How do you say earthquake in Chinese?

Earthquake in Chinese is 地震 (dì zhèn).

How common are earthquakes in Taiwan?

They’re fairly common in Taiwan, however, stronger one’s occur once in a while.

How can I stay safe from an earthquake?

Although escaping an earthquake might be an impossible task in severe circumstances, there are things you can do to help your chance of survival.

TOP TIP | get under table, or any structure that can protect you from anything that can fall from above you.

How many people died in the 1999 Taiwan earthquake?

The casualties and the number of people injured during this calamity were an all time high for Taiwan.

More than 2,700 people died and over 10,000 people were injured.

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    Alexander Krasnov , Student Advisor

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