TAIPEI, – An earthquake of magnitude 5.3 hit eastern Taiwan on Friday, but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage, officials said.
The epicentre of the quake, which struck at 10:42 a.m. (0242 GMT) was about 37.1 km northwest of Hualien on the east coast, at a depth of 14 km, the Central Weather Bureau said in a statement.
The National Fire Agency said there were no immediate reports of damage from the quake, which was also felt in the capital Taipei.
Earthquakes occur frequently in Taiwan, which lies on a seismically active stretch of the Pacific basin.
One of Taiwan’s worst-recorded quakes occurred in September 1999. Measuring magnitude 7.6, it killed more than 2,400 people and destroyed or damaged 50,000 buildings.