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No evidence to support May 11 doomsday warning: NSC

2011/05/10 17:14:54

Taipei, May 10 (CNA) No abnormal underground movement has beendetected over the past month, the National Science Council (NSC) saidTuesday in dismissing a prediction by a self-proclaimed prophet thata magnitude 14 earthquake will destroy Taiwan on May 11.

"Everything looks smooth, " NSC Deputy Minister Chen Cheng-hongsaid, pointing to recent data on groundwater levels, soil gascomposition and magnetic intensity that are commonly used in seismicresearch.

"The council has no authority to take action against individualremarks, but based on the scientific evidence we have now, we can'tsee a massive earthquake coming," he said.

A popular blogger who calls himself "Teacher Wang" predicted thata super earthquake would hit Taiwan at 10: 42: 37 a.m. on May 11 and"rip the island in half."

Wang, whose apocalyptic warnings have caused some public anxiety,said his prediction was based on the Chinese classic I Ching.

As of Tuesday, hundreds of freight containers had been deliveredto Puli in Nantou County to accommodate Wang and his followers, whobelieve it will be safer to take shelter in the converted containerswhen the earthquake and accompanying 170-meter high tsunamis hit.

A total of 9,000 sacks of rice weighing more than 27 tons, alongwith necessities such as bottled water and diesel fuel, have alsobeen spotted at the site.

Rebuffed by scientists, Wang's prediction has also drawn ridiculefrom netizens.

"Why bother buying containers? Just get coffins!" one said on theInternet.

(By Lee Hsin-Yin)