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18 killed, 505 injured after quake hit southern Taiwan

2016/02/07 09:50:17

Tainan, early Sunday.

●Feb. 9: Death toll rises to 40 in southern Taiwan earthquake

Taipei, Feb. 7 (CNA) With search and rescue efforts continuing for more than 24 hours in Tainan after a strong earthquake hit southern Taiwan, the death toll had climbed to 18 as of 7:30 in Sunday morning, according to the Tainan City government's Fire Bureau.

Tainan was hit the hardest by the deadly 6.4 magnitude tremor, which occurred at 3:57 a.m. Saturday, toppling more than 10 buildings, all in Tainan.

Rescue efforts from the government and charity groups, including the Red Cross Society of the ROC, have been intensified in a bid to save as many lives as possible. Donations from enterprises and charity groups have been pouring in to help with relief efforts.

At 8 a.m., at least 18 deaths and 505 injured were confirmed, while a total of 356 have been rescued, with 152 others remaining unaccounted for, the data showed. Meanwhile, 98 of the injured remained hospitalized and 424 have been evacuated.

[Sunday morning]

Of the 18 deaths, 16 resulted from a collapse of buildings at the Weiguan Jinlong residential complex in Tainan after the quake hit.

Rescuers found three bodies from the Weiguan Jinlong complex at 1 a.m.- 2 a.m. on Sunday, one male and two females, at a time when many families of the missing people were anxiously waiting outside the affected compound.

In early Sunday morning, rescue teams found three persons alive, including a little boy and his father.

According to the local fire bureau, about 100 people remained trapped in the rubbles of the Weiguan Jinlong compound. Tainan Mayor Lai Ching-te (賴清德) said that these people were currently trapped in the lower stories of the collapsed buildings so it was not easy for rescuers to pull them out.

Lai, however, stressed that rescue teams will continue their efforts until the people trapped in the rubbles are rescued.

(By Tang Pei-chun, Yang ssu-jui and Frances Huang; click here for the full coverage of the earthquke aftermath.)