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Taiwan Rescuers Free 9 from Cave After Earthquake

Taiwan Earthquake

In the aftermath of the most significant earthquake in Taiwan in a quarter-century, rescuers worked tirelessly to free nine individuals trapped within a labyrinthine cave in the island’s mountainous east. However, the relief of their liberation was tempered by the grim reality that two others, though located, were feared to have perished. Here are some details according to the report of The Manila Times.

Death Toll Stands, Grim Discoveries Made

Authorities confirmed the official death toll from Wednesday’s magnitude-7.4 quake at 10. However, the government in Hualien county, the hardest-hit region, disclosed that two additional individuals encountered on a hiking trail were found with “no signs of life.” However, due to the depth of their burial, their deaths could not be immediately verified.

Efforts to identify the deceased faced significant challenges. The national disaster agency stated, “Currently, the two people seen at the scene cannot be identified because they are buried too deep and have not been completely dug out.”

Stranded Amidst Devastation

By Friday, hundreds remained stranded amidst the mountainous terrain, with roadways obstructed by landslides and rockfalls. Yet, rescue operations deployed helicopters, drones, and specialized teams with canines to reach most, who were known to be safe.

The county government reported the successful rescue of nine individuals from the Tunnel of Nine Turns. The cave is popular among tourists.

Efforts commenced in the urban hub of Hualien to demolish the Uranus building. It had tilted at a precarious 45-degree angle following the quake, posing a significant risk. Utilizing a pink crane, workers meticulously dismantled the structure, aiming to restore normalcy to the city.

Prior to the commencement of demolition, workers and officials held a solemn ceremony. They offered prayers and symbolic offerings for a successful operation. Meanwhile, neighboring buildings displayed messages of solidarity, urging perseverance amidst adversity.

Statistics and Ongoing Concerns

According to the national disaster agency, the quake resulted in 10 fatalities and 1,106 injuries. While over 700 individuals were initially stranded but later accounted for, authorities remained in the dark regarding the whereabouts of 18 individuals. This prompted ongoing efforts to locate and assist them.

Read Also: Tsunami Warnings Issued After Major 7.4-Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Taiwan

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