Chiayi House Collapses, Not Caused by Earthquake

chiayi house collapse
Photo courtesy Chiayi County Fire Bureau

A house in Chiayi County’s Minxiong Township collapsed at 7:25 pm on Monday, injuring one resident. The incident was not caused by earthquake damage but affected four neighboring households, Apple Daily reported.

A 50-year-old woman surnamed Lee (李) was trapped in the incident at No. 539 Guanming St. (光明街) when the fire department arrived on the scene at 7:35 pm. She was in the rear of the house drying clothes at the time of the incident.

A neighbor said that she felt the rear of the building fall and then she heard Ms. Lee calling for help. She and her son attempted to rescue the woman until rescue workers arrived to take her to St. Martin De Porres Hospital. Ms. Lee was not seriously injured.

Soil behind the building was unstable, causing the foundation to shift and slide into the nearby construction site.

A contractor had been beginning work at the rear of the building. Construction site manager Tsai Wang-lin (蔡旺霖) said that the construction crew was set to reinforce culverts tomorrow to prevent soil erosion. He said that the company will assist in rebuilding what was damaged and fix drainage culverts to prevent further damage.

Residents are blaming the incident on a lack of retaining walls at the construction site. The residents are organizing to demand compensation from the construction company. The reason for the collapse will be investigated further.

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