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THE WORLD

Cranes Fall in Taiwan, Killing Five

April 01, 2002|From Associated Press

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Cranes and scaffolding at a high-rise building site crashed to the ground after a powerful earthquake jolted Taiwan on Sunday, killing five construction workers, authorities said.

Two aftershocks, measuring magnitudes 4.8 and 4.5, shook the eastern part of the island today, setting off landslides. No injuries were reported.

On Sunday, more than 200 mostly minor injuries were reported across the island as the quake started fires, shattered windows and cracked walls. Local officials said the quake registered magnitude 6.8, but the U.S. Geological Survey estimated it at magnitude 7.1.

Two cranes fell from the 60th floor of a high-rise building under construction in Taipei, the capital. Television footage showed the cranes tumbling, bringing steel beams and chunks of cement with them.

Police identified the victims as two crane operators and three other construction workers. Dozens of other workers ran down from the structure safely, witnesses said.

About 10 people were hurt by the falling debris, including a woman whose hand was severed when part of a crane crashed onto her car.

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