TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Northern Taiwan has felt hundreds aftershocks following two major quakes which have hit the island over the past three days, and reports show that they may not stop any time soon.
Following last night’s magnitude 6.0 earthquake, a string of aftershocks continues to be counted. By 3 p.m. today, the amount has surpassed 153 and 18 of those were substantial enough to be felt, reported CNA.
If the aftershocks from last night’s magnitude 6.0 earthquake in Hualien continue, there is potential for another strong earthquake, according to a CWB report.
On Monday, after a magnitude 5.8 earthquake hit Hualien on Sunday, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) counted 94 aftershocks, 40 within the first three hours after the main earthquake struck, and three of which measured over 5.0. The largest aftershock measured at 5.4.
The CWB initially reported that the aftershocks from Sunday's quake would decrease in size however from Monday to Tuesday the opposite occurred.
The aftershocks gradually increased in size and began to measure a magnitude of 4 then 5, eventually resulting in yesterday's magnitude 6.0 quake.
Director of the CWB Seismological Center, Chen Kuo-chang (陳國昌), said that in the future if the size of the aftershocks continue to vary like that, there is a higher probability of an earthquake occurring again.
On average Taiwan receives 2 – 3 magnitude 6.0 and higher earthquakes a year although they often occur in a deep layer of the earth or offshore so we do not feel them as strongly, according to UDN.
Last year there was not a single earthquake over 6.0 however the year before last there were five, three of which occurred offshore.
Coincidentally the last magnitude 7.0 earthquake in Taiwan struck Tainan in 2016.