Japan helps Taiwan after earthquake

Japan sent a team of seven search and rescue experts to Taiwan to help find survivors of its devastating earthquake on Tuesday. The group took with them expensive specialist equipment for locating people trapped under debris.


Photo credit to: http://ktla.com

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also sent a message of condolence and support to Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen on Thursday, remembering the support Japan received from Taiwan during the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster in northeastern Japan.


Nine people are confirmed dead and 25 others are still missing after the 6.4 magnitude quake hit the popular eastern tourist city of Hualien on late Tuesday.


The powerful tremor left quite a number of buildings severely damaged with some of them leaning at very steep angles as well as roads torn up and hundreds forced to flee in makeshift shelters in local schools and a stadium.


Rescuers braved the following aftershocks and coursed through the leaning buildings that were partially toppled by the earthquake as their search for survivors revealed two more bodies.


The focus for emergency responders remained in the Yun Tsui apartment block, where six of the confirmed deaths were revealed and dozens are still reported missing.


The lower floors of the 12-story tower and hotel tipped to its side which left the structure leaning at a 50-degree angle and sparking fears of an imminent collapse.


Amid the risky situation, rescuers kept going into the building in search for survivors, however, on Thursday the rescuers only managed to recover two bodies: a tourist and a worker.


Aftershocks have continued repeatedly, sending rescue teams running from the building, only for them to return a short while later and resume their dangerous task.


The Hualien quake, as it’s now being called, came exactly two years to the day after a quake of similar size struck the western city of Tainan that killed 117 people.


Reference: Japan sends rescue experts to Taiwan; earthquake toll now nine dead, 25 missing


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