6.9-magnitude earthquake strikes Taiwan, triggers tsunami warning in Japan

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First responders in Taiwan are searching among the rubble for survivors after a 6.9-magnitude earthquake hit the island on Sunday, raising fears of a tsunami in Japan.

Taiwan’s earthquake monitoring agency says the quake hit the island’s southeast coast at a depth of about four miles. The agency reported dozens of aftershocks in the hours after the opening quake.

The US Geological Survey said the threat of a tsunami to hit Japan is over, according to NBC News.

Images from Hualien County in eastern Taiwan show at least one collapsed building, as firefighters and other responders try to rescue those trapped inside.

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Firefighters at a collapsed building during a rescue operation following the earthquake in Yuli Township, Hualien County, east Taiwan, Sunday, September 18, 2022 (Hualien City Government via Associated Press)

Firefighters search for victims trapped in a collapsed apartment building in the aftermath of the earthquake in Yuli Township in eastern Taiwan's Hualien County, Sunday, September 18, 2022.

Firefighters search for victims trapped in a collapsed apartment building in the aftermath of the earthquake in Yuli Township in eastern Taiwan’s Hualien County, Sunday, September 18, 2022.

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Taiwan has no official reports of injuries or deaths from the earthquake, but reports indicate that at least one person was killed and 79 others injured.

The injuries were concentrated around the collapsed store building and Gaoliao Bridge in Hualien County, as well as a derailed train carriage. Authorities rescued three people who fell from the bridge during the quake, according to the South China Morning Post.

Firefighters say they rescued a 39-year-old woman and her five-year-old daughter from the collapsed store, too.

The disaster comes weeks after Taiwan offered to send first responders to help Chinese firefighters trying to rescue those trapped in the wake of a 6.8-magnitude earthquake in early September.

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However, the Chinese government has not responded to the offer, and Beijing has not yet commented on Sunday’s earthquake.

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