7.4 earthquake strikes eastern coast of Taiwan; damage still being evaluated

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TAIPEI, Taiwan (KABC) — A powerful earthquake measuring 7.4 magnitude struck Taiwan on Tuesday, according to the USGS.

The quake struck on the island’s east coast at a depth of about 21 miles. It hit about 11 miles south southwest of Hualien City. It struck just before 5 p.m. California time, which is 8 a.m. Wednesday in Taiwan.

A second big quake measuring 6.5, believed to be an aftershock, struck just north of that area about 10 minutes later.

Japan has issued a tsunami alert for the southern Japanese island group of Okinawa.

Japanese authorities said the first wave of the tsunami was already believed to have arrived on the coasts of Miyako and Yaeyama islands.

American authorities said the tsunami was not expected to reach the U.S. mainland.

Taiwan’s earthquake monitoring agency measured the magnitude as 7.2, while the U.S. Geological Survey initially put it at 7.5, then revised its measurement to 7.4.

Television showed buildings in Taiwan’s eastern city of Hualien shaken off their foundations. The quake could be felt in the capital Taipei.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

DEVELOPING: This story will be updated.

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