Premier Chang visits quake-struck Tainan
At 3:57 a.m. on February 6, 2016, an earthquake of magnitude 6.4 rattled southern Taiwan and toppled several buildings in Tainan City, killing and injuring hundreds. Premier Chang San-cheng (center) visited the site promptly and directed government agencies to devote their full resources to rescuing and sheltering victims. Chang returned to Tainan more than 10 times thereafter to monitor recovery efforts. He also ordered the formation of a task force to coordinate reconstruction tasks among central and local governments.The earthquake also brought the issues of soil liquefaction and old building safety to the public spotlight. To address these problems, the Executive Yuan on February 25 approved draft amendments to the Urban Renewal Act, the Disaster Prevention and Protection Act, and the Building Act, and on March 14 launched a national database on areas at risk of soil liquefaction. On April 29, it approved a plan to improve the safety of residential buildings around Taiwan by evaluating the seismic resistance of old structures and mitigating liquefaction in risk areas. Buildings that deemed unsafe and are not earthquake-proof can receive urban renewal subsidies to undergo structural reinforcement or reconstruction. In the photo, Premier Chang on February 6 visits a site in Tainan that was devastated by the quake.