7.4 magnitude quake hits Taiwan, strongest in 25 years

By Nectar Gan, Wayne Chang, Jerome Taylor, Antoinette Radford, Deva Lee and Maureen Chowdhury, CNN

Updated 9:09 p.m. ET, April 3, 2024
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9:46 p.m. ET, April 2, 2024

Flights to and from Japan's Okinawa and Kagoshima regions suspended, Japan Airlines says

From CNN's Junko Ogura

All flights from Japan's Okinawa and Kagoshima regions have been suspended following tsunami warnings in the area, according to Japan Airlines.

Flights that were headed to the areas with tsunami warnings have been turned back, it added.

9:37 p.m. ET, April 2, 2024

Damage reported in Taiwan following earthquake

From CNN's Wayne Chang

In this image taken from a video footage run by TVBS, a partially collapsed building is seen in Hualien, eastern Taiwan on Wednesday, April 3.
In this image taken from a video footage run by TVBS, a partially collapsed building is seen in Hualien, eastern Taiwan on Wednesday, April 3. TVBS/AP

Reports of preliminary damage are emerging following a 7.4 magnitude earthquake in Taiwan.

Tilted houses and damage have been reported in Hualien County, Taiwan's Defense Ministry said, adding that military troops have been dispatched for disaster relief and to minimize damage and that schools and work have been suspended amid the continuing aftershocks.

9:38 p.m. ET, April 2, 2024

First tsunami warning in Japan's Okinawa area in 26 years

From CNN's Junko Ogura

Wednesday's tsunami in Japan's Okinawa area was the first observed in 26 years, with the last one taking place in 1998 following a 7.7 earthquake 20 km south of Ishigaki Island, according to Japan's Metrological Agency (JMA).

During the 1998 tsunami, the forecast was for 1-meter-high waves in the coastal areas of Miyakojima and Yaeyama regions, but the actual tsunami observed was less than 10 centimeters, according to JMA. 

1:55 a.m. ET, April 3, 2024

Taiwan earthquake is strongest in 25 years, central weather administration says

From CNN's Wayne Chang

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The earthquake that struck Taiwan early on Wednesday is the strongest to impact the island in 25 years, according to a spokesperson from Taiwan's Central Weather Administration.

A 7.3 earthquake, also known as the Jiji earthquake, struck the island in 1999, according to CWA. 

That powerful quake hit 93 miles (150 kilometers) south of Taipei, killing 2,400 people and injuring 10,000 others.

12:49 a.m. ET, April 3, 2024

Major quake strikes off Taiwan's coast, prompting tsunami warnings

From CNN's Wayne Chang

In this image taken from a video footage run by TVBS, a partially collapsed building is seen in Hualien, eastern Taiwan on Wednesday, April 3.
In this image taken from a video footage run by TVBS, a partially collapsed building is seen in Hualien, eastern Taiwan on Wednesday, April 3. TVBS/AP

A major earthquake with a magnitude of 7.4 struck off Taiwan’s eastern coast Wednesday, according to the US Geological Survey, prompting tsunami warnings for the island and southern Japan.

The quake’s epicenter is located about 18 kilometers (11 miles) south of the city of Hualien.

Taiwan’s Central Weather Administration issued a tsunami warning following the quake. An alert from CWA was sent to residents, though not all received it, warning that a tsunami was expected to impact the northern coastal area and that residents are advised to evacuate to higher ground.

The Japan Meteorological Agency also issued a tsunami warning for Miyakojima and Okinawa islands, warning of waves up to 3 meters expected imminently.