What we know about the 7.4 magnitude Taiwan earthquake| Trending Viral hub

What we know about the 7.4 magnitude Taiwan earthquake

An earthquake scientist looks at what we know so far about the magnitude 7 Taiwan earthquake and what may happen next.

Leaning brown building with round windows at an intersection.

The Uranus Building on Xuanyuan Road is severely tilted as at least four people were killed and hundreds more injured after an earthquake measuring 7.4 on the Richter scale struck off Taiwan’s east coast, in Hualien, Taiwan, on 3 April 2024.

Credit:

Hualien County Fire Department/Anadolu via Getty Images

The following essay is reprinted with the permission of The conversationThe conversationan online publication covering the latest research.

Earlier today, a large earthquake of magnitude 7.4 struck off the central east coast of Taiwan, approximately 20 kilometers south of the city of Hualien.

Locals near the epicenter described severe to violent ground shaking during the quake, strong enough to make it difficult to stand and drive a vehicle. It was reportedly felt across the country, as well as in neighboring China.


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So what do we know so far about the earthquake and what its impacts may be?

Death and damage

News Departures have reported At least four people died and dozens were injured as a result of the earthquake.

While much of Taiwan’s population lives on the country’s west coast, the city of Hualien is one of the largest population centers on the east coast. Its population is approximately 100,000.

Damage to the construction has been reported in the region near the epicenter of the earthquake, including the city of Hualien.

Landslides also occurred along the mountainous central east coast.

A tsunami warning was issued for Taiwan and neighboring countries, including Japan and the Philippines. At the time of writing, a 30 cm tsunami was reported along the southern coast of Japan. This would have manifested itself as noticeable coastal surge, but is unlikely to cause major damage.

The largest tsunami wave is not always the first, so a larger tsunami wave is possible, but as time goes on this becomes increasingly unlikely.

Were there any warnings?

Although earthquakes cannot be predicted, Taiwan has a early warning system.

This system detect ground tremor as it occurs in the epicentral region, and immediately sends a alert which travels faster than seismic energy and associated ground shaking.

It likely provided crucial seconds of warning for those living far from the epicenter to take cover.

What type of earthquake was it?

Initial Dear All suggest The earthquake rupture began between 10 and 40 kilometers below the Earth’s surface.

A shallower earthquake will generally produce stronger ground shaking than a deeper one and is therefore more likely to cause damage to nearby buildings.

The latest analysis of data from this earthquake suggests that the earthquake occurred at the shallow end of this range and likely produced a rupture that broke the surface. Satellite data of the Earth’s surface will tell us more about ground deformation in the coming days.

The earthquake rupture occurred on a reverse fault. This is where the earthquake lifts one side of the Earth’s crust relative to the other. This can cause a vertical shift of the ocean floor, which can generate a tsunami.

About three hours after the initial quake, there have already been 13 aftershocks of magnitude greater than 5.0, all large enough to produce their own tremors across much of the country.

Strong aftershocks can cause the collapse of buildings that were only damaged during the main quake.

A history of earthquakes in the area.

The Hualien region has experienced earthquakes before.

In February 2018, this region produced a earthquake of magnitude 6.4, which unfortunately caused 17 deaths.

That earthquake was the lead event in a sequence of seismic events in early 2018, including a magnitude 6.1 harbinger. A foreshock is a smaller magnitude earthquake that precedes a larger earthquake in the same region by days or weeks. We don’t know that an earthquake is a foreshock until the mainshock occurs.

According to my analysis of available seismic data, the Hualien region experiences earthquakes larger than magnitude 7 approximately once every 30 years.

The largest earthquake recently recorded off the coast of Taiwan was magnitude 7.6. Chi-Chi Earthquake (sometimes written in English as Jiji earthquake) that occurred in 1999.

More than 2,400 People lost their lives as a result of this earthquake.

Today’s magnitude 7.4 earthquake will likely continue to produce aftershocks in the coming days and weeks.

We cannot rule out the possibility that today’s earthquake was not even the largest event in this sequence, although as time passes the probability of an associated event of greater magnitude decreases.

¿Where can i get more information?

Be careful what you see or read on social media; In the early stages of a natural disaster, people often share images that actually depict other disasters.

For updates, I recommend following the Taiwan page. Central Meteorological Administrationwhich reports on aftershocks and tsunami warnings as more information becomes available.

This article was originally published in The conversation. Read the Original article.

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