Hualien rocked by quakes
Three earthquakes shook Hualien early yesterday, with the strongest having a magnitude of 5.1, but there were no reports of casualties or damage, the Central Weather Bureau said. The magnitude 5.1 quake hit at 1:45am, centered 7.5km southwest of Hualien County Hall at a depth of 18.1km, the bureau’s Seismology Center said. The quake caused strong tremors, but they did not last long, the center said. A magnitude 2.8 quake struck at 2:14am, with its center 9km west of the county hall at a depth of 11.7km, the center said. It was followed by a magnitude 4.7 temblor at 3:43am, which was centered 8.5km southwest of the county hall at a depth of 16.1km.
Villages buy lottery tickets
Five villages in Taitung County joined forces to buy tickets for the national lottery that was to be drawn last night in the hope of hitting the NT$1.3 billion (US$45 million) jackpot and improving the lives of their residents. Children from the mountainous villages in the county’s Yanping Township (延平), which has a population of 3,551, collected NT$5,600 worth of coins, while adults set up a pool of NT$92,000 to buy lottery tickets. Tsai Wen-hao (蔡文浩), head of Taoyuan Village (桃源), said if they won, he would suggest building a swimming pool and a fitness center in each village, as well as a rehabilitation center for the township. The rest of the money would be handed out in cash to each village based on its investment ratio, he said. Wang Yi-chung (王勇生), head of Wuling Village (武陵), said his dream was to buy seven electric vehicles for disabled elderly villagers to help them get around more easily. Two other village heads said they would use the money to improve public transportation infrastructure, such as repairing a damaged bridge.