5.5-magnitude quake hits off Taiwan

5.5-magnitude quake hits off Taiwan

TAIPEI - Agence France Presse
5.5-magnitude quake hits off Taiwan A 5.5-magnitude earthquake struck off southern Taiwan today, the island's Seismology Center said, but there were no reports of any damage or casualties, AFP reported.

The tremor, which was felt across the south of the island, struck at 6:31pm , 22.1 kilometres south of the island's second biggest city Kaohsiung, at a depth of 33.0 kilometres under the sea, the centre said.

Seismologists attributed the lack of damage caused to the quake's relatively deep epicentre.

Taiwan lies near the junction of two tectonic plates and is regularly hit by earthquakes. A 5.9-magnitude quake in February sent people rushing onto the streets of the island's second-largest city of Kaohsiung and led to a temporary suspension of rail services, but no major damage was reported.

In September 1999, a 7.6-magnitude tremor killed around 2,400 people in the deadliest natural disaster in the island's recent history.