An elderly woman in New Taipei apparently died after a magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck northeastern Taiwan at 5:28 a.m. Thursday, local time.

The earthquake, with an epicenter situated 36.5 kilometers southeast of Yilan County Hall at a depth of 22.5 km, disrupted the train traffic stranding 2,500 passengers.

taiwan strong earthquake august 2019, taiwan strong earthquake august 7 2019 video
A strong and shallow earthquake hit Taiwan on August 7, 2019, killing 1 and damaging buildings. Picture: Focus Taiwan

Shortly after the temblor, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) activated the emergency response mechanism.

After receiving briefings from the National Security Council, Tsai posted a message on her Facebook and other social media platforms reassuring the public that no major damage or casualties had been reported as a result of the earthquake.

However, a 60 year-old-woman in New Taipei was apparently crushed by a closet that toppled over during the quake and later declared dead by hospital authorities.

Due to the earthquake, the departure of the first Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport MRT train to Taipei was delayed from 5:57 a.m. until 6:20 a.m.

Meanwhile, Taipei City Fire Department reported several cases of people trapped in elevators and damage to buildings, while Taichung City reported leaks of ruptured water and natural gas pipelines.

In addition, thousands of households suffered power outages in the wake of the earthquake, with power restored to most affected households as of 10 a.m.

Meanwhile, Asama volcano near Tokyo erupted for the first time in four years, throwing ash and smoke nearly 2km into the sky and sparking warnings not to approach the mountain:

The city of Yilan lies near the junction of two tectonic plates and is prone to earthquakes… And is likely to suffer from more powerful earthquakes in the future. So be ready if you live in that area of the world!

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