List of earthquakes in Taiwan

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Plot of earthquake data on map of Taiwan.

This list of earthquakes in Taiwan charts significant earthquakes which have affected the island of Taiwan.

Taiwan is in a seismically active zone, on the Pacific Ring of Fire, and at the western edge of the Philippine Sea Plate.[1] Geologists have identified 42 active faults on the island, but most of the earthquakes detected in Taiwan are due to the convergence of the Philippine Sea plate and the Eurasian Plate to the east of the island.[1][2] Most of the earthquakes registered in Taiwan actually occur off the east coast and cause little damage, whereas smaller quakes beneath the island itself have historically proven more destructive. The first recorded earthquake in Taiwan was in 1624, the founding year of Dutch Formosa.[3] Between 1901 and the year 2000 there were 91 major earthquakes in Taiwan, 48 of them resulting in loss of life.[4] The most recent major earthquake was the 921 Earthquake, which struck on September 21, 1999, and claimed 2,415 lives.

Many modern buildings in Taiwan are constructed with earthquake safety in mind, including Taipei 101, which had to cope with the dual challenges of being flexible enough to withstand earthquakes, yet rigid enough to resist wind shear. The High Speed Rail system incorporates an automatic safety device to safely bring all trains to a halt when a significant earthquake is detected.[5] Nevertheless, poor construction standards have been blamed for casualties in a number of major earthquakes, including the 1906 Meishan earthquake and the 921 Earthquake. Inside Taiwan the Central Weather Bureau is the organisation responsible for monitoring and reporting on earthquakes. Large earthquakes are also assessed by the United States Geological Survey. Scientific studies of the seismology of the island started in the Japanese era, when the first seismograph was installed in Taipei by Fusakichi Omori's company.[6]

List of earthquakes[edit]

Magnitude 5.5–5.9 6.0–6.4 6.5–6.9 7.0–7.4 7.5–7.9 8.0+
Deaths 1–10 11–50 51–100 101–500 501–1,000 1,001+

Significant earthquakes are listed here from 1736 to the present. Starting with the Japanese era in 1895 there were major improvements in detection technology, allowing more detailed gathering of data.

The earthquakes are colour-coded according to magnitude and casualties.

Date
(UTC+8)
Time
(UTC+8)
Area affected Latitude
(°N)
Longitude
(°E)
Depth
(km)
Magnitude
(ML
Dead Houses
destroyed
Main article
January 30, 1736 Tainan 23.1 120.5 - ~6.5 372 698
August 9, 1792 Chiayi, Changhua, Yunlin 23.6 120.5 - ~7.1 617 24,621
March 17, 1811 From Chiayi northwards 23.8 121.8 - ~7.5 21 41
October 13–14, 1815 From Chiayi northwards 24.0 121.7 - ~7.7 113 243
March 4, 1845 Chiayi, Changhua, Taichung 24.1 120.7 - ~6.0 381 4220
December 3, 1848 Tainan, Changhua, Chiayi 24.1 120.5 - ~7.1 1,030 13,993
June 7, 1862 Tainan, Chiayi, Changhua 23.2 120.2 - ~7.0 over 500 over 500
November 6, 1865 Taipei, Keelung 24.9 121.6 - ~6.0 "many"
December 18, 1867 Taipei, Keelung, Hsinchu 25.3 121.7 - ~7.0 hundreds
February 18, 1881 Taipei, Hsinchu, Miaoli 24.6 120.7 - ~6.2 11 210
December 9, 1882 Island-wide 23.0 121.4 - ~7.5 10 40
March 15, 1897 Yilan, Taipei - - - - 56 50
April 24, 1904 14:39 Chiayi 23.5 120.3 - 6.1 3 66
November 6, 1904 04:25 Chiayi 23.6 120.3 7 6.1 145 661 1904 Douliu earthquake
March 17, 1906 06:43 Chiayi 23.6 120.5 6 7.1 1,258 6,769 1906 Meishan earthquake
April 14, 1906 03:18 Tainan 23.4 120.4 20 6.6 15 1,794
January 11, 1908 11:35 Hualien 23.7 121.4 10 7.3 2 3
April 15, 1909 03:54 Taipei 23.7 121.5 80 7.3 9 122
April 12, 1910 08:22 Keelung 25.1 122.9 200 8.3 13
August 28, 1916 15:27 Central Taiwan 24.0 121.0 45 6.8 16 614 1916-17 Nantou earthquakes
November 15, 1916 06:31 Central Taiwan 24.1 120.9 3 6.2 1 97
January 5, 1917 00:55 Central Taiwan 24.0 121.0 shallow 6.2 54 130
January 7, 1917 02:08 Central Taiwan 23.9 120.9 shallow 5.5 187
June 5, 1920 12:21 Hualien 24.6 121.9 20 8.3 5 273
September 2, 1922 03:16 Hualien 24.5 122 20 7.6 5 14
October 15, 1922 07:47 Hualien 24.6 122.3 20 5.9 6
December 2, 1922 11:46 Hualien 24.6 122.0 6.0 1 1
August 25, 1927 02:09 Tainan 23.3 120.3 20 6.5 11 214
December 8, 1930 16:01 Tainan 23.3 120.4 20 6.1 4 49
April 21, 1935 06:02 Hsinchu, Taichung 24.4 120.8 5 7.1 3,276 17,907 1935 Hsinchu-Taichung earthquake
July 17, 1935 00:19 Hsinchu, Taichung 24.6 120.7 30 6.2 44 1,734
December 17, 1941 03:19 Chiayi 23.4 120.5 12 7.1 360 4,520 1941 Zhongpu earthquake
October 23, 1943 00:01 Hualien 23.8 121.5 5 6.2 1 1
December 2, 1943 13:09 Taitung 22.5 121.5 40 6.1 3 139
December 5, 1946 06:47 Tainan 23.1 120.3 5 6.1 74 1,954 1946 Xinhua earthquake
October 22, 1951 05:34 Hualien 23.9 121.7 4 7.3 68 1951 East Rift Valley earthquakes
November 25, 1951 02:50 Hualien 23.3 121.3 7.3 17
February 24, 1957 04:26 Hualien 23.8 121.8 30 7.3 11 44
October 20, 1957 02:28 Hualien 23.7 121.5 10 6.6 4
April 27, 1959 04:41 Northeast Taiwan 24.1 123.0 150 7.7 1 9
August 15, 1959 16:57 Pingtung 21.7 121.3 20 7.1 16 1,214 1959 Hengchun earthquake
February 13, 1963 16:50 Yilan 24.4 122.1 47 7.3 3 6 1963 Su-ao earthquake
March 4, 1963 21:38 Yilan 24.6 121.1 5 6.4 1
January 18, 1964 20:04 Chiayi, Tainan 23.2 120.6 18 6.3 106 10,924 1964 Baihe Earthquake
March 13, 1966 00:31 Hualien 24.2 122.7 42 7.8 4 24
October 25, 1967 08:59 Yilan 24.4 122.1 20 6.1 2 21
January 25, 1972 10:07 Taitung 22.5 122.3 33 7.3 1 5
April 24, 1972 17:57 Hualien 23.5 121.4 15 6.9 5 50 1972 Ruisui earthquake
December 13, 1978 19:23 Hualien 23.3 121.6 4 6.8 2
January 23, 1982 22:11 Yilan, Hualien 24.0 121.6 3 6.5 1
May 20, 1986 13:25 Hualien 24.1 121.6 16 6.2 1
November 15, 1986 05:20 Hualien 24.0 121.8 15 6.8 15 37
December 13, 1990 11:01 Hualien 23.9 121.5 3 6.5 2 3
June 5, 1994 09:09 Yilan, Hualien 24.4 121.8 5.3 6.2 1 1
September 16, 1994 14:20 Taiwan Strait 22.5 118.7 13 6.8 0 0 1994 Taiwan Strait earthquake
February 23, 1995 23:13 Hualien 24.2 121.7 21.7 5.8 2
June 25, 1995 14:59 Yilan, Hualien 24.6 121.7 40 6.5 1 6
July 17, 1998 12:51 Nantou 23.5 120.7 3 6.2 5
September 21, 1999 01:47 Island-wide 23.9 120.8 8 7.3 2,415 51,711 921 Earthquake
May 17, 2000 11:25 Nantou 24.2 121.1 3 5.3 3
June 11, 2000 02:23 Nantou 23.9 121.1 10.2 6.7 2
March 31, 2002 14:52 Hualien, Nantou 24.2 122.1 9.6 6.8 5 6
May 15, 2002 11:46 Yilan, Hualien 24.6 121.9 5 6.2 1
May 1, 2004 12:38 Hualien 24.1 121.95 17.8 5.8 2
December 26, 2006 20:26 Pingtung 21.69 120.56 44.1 7.0 2 3 2006 Hengchun Earthquake
20:26 21.97 120.42 50.2 7.0
December 19, 2009 21:02 Hualien 23.78 121.75 45.9 6.8 0 2009 Hualien earthquake
March 4, 2010 08:18 Kaohsiung 23.0 120.73 5 6.4 0 2010 Kaohsiung earthquake
February 26, 2012 10:35 Pingtung 22.75 120.75 26.3 6.4 0
March 7, 2013 11:36 Hualien 24.31 121.49 15.2 5.6 0
March 27, 2013 10:03 Island-wide 23.9 121.05 19.4 6.2 1[7] March 2013 Nantou earthquake
June 2, 2013 13:43 Island-wide 23.86 120.97 14.5 6.5 5[8][9][10] June 2013 Nantou earthquake
June 8, 2013 00:38 N/A 23.88 122.7 59.0 5.9 0
June 29, 2013 07:51 Hualien 24.00 122.3 8 5.6 0[11] June 2013 Hualien Earthquake
Oct 31, 2013 20:02 Hualien 23.62 121.43 19.5 6.3 0 October 2013 Hualien Earthquake

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]