Taiwan earthquake strikes Taoyuan Airport as passengers duck for cover: video

Taiwan National Fire Agency
Taiwan National Fire Agency

An earthquake measuring a magnitude of 7.2 on the Richter scale has hit Taiwan leaving seven dead and hundreds injured, as well as multiple buildings damaged.  

According to the United States (US) Geological Survey the earthquake struck just before 08:00 local time on April 4, 2024, around 18 kilometers (11.1 miles) south-southwest of Hualien on the east coast of the island and was about 35 kilometers (21 miles) deep. 

In response to the earthquake Tsunami warnings were triggered in Japan and the Philippines but have since been removed.  

Among those who sadly lost their lives were three people that were killed by falling rocks, according to local news reports.  

The moment the earthquake struck was captured on film by a person at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE).  

In the footage taken in a terminal building, passengers were forced to duck for cover as the entire area shook under the force of the earthquake.  

It was also reported by local media that the Taoyuan Airport suffered structural damage with parts of the ceiling falling to the ground. 

According to Focus Taiwan, the Taoyuan International Airport Corporation set up an emergency response center to assist passengers following the earthquake.  

The publication added that two Taiwanese nationals and one Vietnamese traveler were hit by falling debris but continued with their journeys. 

Taiwan’s earthquake monitoring agency said the earthquake measure a magnitude of 7.2 while the US Geological Survey placed it at 7.4. on the Richter scale.  

The earthquake is the strongest to hit Taiwan in 25 years.

How air travel in the region was affected  

Naha Airport (OKA) in Okinawa, Japan, was temporarily closed due to the Tsunami warning while many airlines proceeded to cancel flights to Taiwan in the immediate aftermath.  

Japan Airlines (JAL) warned customers that some flights may be affected by the earthquake while All Nippon Airways (ANA) said flights from OKA, Miyako Airport (MMY) and Painushima Ishigaki Airport (ISG) had been disrupted.  

In its latest update on social media, Taoyuan International Airport Corporation said that operations had returned to normal but that passengers should allow extra time to travel. 

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