TAIPEI (TVBS NEWS) — A magnitude 5.9 earthquake jolted eastern Taiwan again, one day after a series of earthquakes struck the Hualien and Taitung areas. The strong quakes caused significant damage to the architecture and infrastructure across the country over the past couple of days, and lifted up the railings of the railways in many areas.
"It is more serious when it comes to the railways. The earthquakes have lifted the railings of the railway in 11 sections," said Wang Kwo-tsai, the Minister of Transportation and Communications. The strong earthquakes also caused rocks from Hualien's "Sixty Stone Mountain" to fall, trapping more than 400 tourists in the mountainous area. The R.O.C. military immediately dispatched emergency units to assist the stranded individuals.
"The situation is more severe than we expected it to be. Yesterday, when we were clearing things up, there was another quake that caused one of our staff to fall down the mountain, along with the rocks," said Chen Rong-cong, the chief of Hualien’s Fuli Township. Faced with this natural disaster, President Tsai Ing-wen said that the central government will allocate all necessary resources to help those affected in the best possible way and as quickly as possible.
"We have dispatched the first batch of relief workforce and resources and are fully committed to disaster relief. As the aftershocks continue, I would like to ask the Ministry of Health and Welfare to assist the local government in the Hualien and Taitung areas, and prepare shelters and all resources needed," said Tsai Ing-wen.
Premier Su Tsen-chang has brought an administrative team to the disaster areas to offer their condolences and see the current progress of the search and rescue.