Dramatic Moment Shopkeeper Escapes Quake With Pet Budgie

CENPublished: February 7, 2018Updated: February 8, 2018
Published: February 7, 2018Updated: February 8, 2018

Incredible footage has emerged of a shopkeeper who saved herself and her pet budgie during a violent earthquake in East Taiwan late Tuesday night.

Surveillance video from the Tien-yo motorcycle helmet shop in East Taiwan’s Hualien County shows the woman delaying her own rescue to free the bird from its cage.

The magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck just after 11:50pm local time on 6th February, and the clip shows helmets flying off the racks and narrowly missing the shopkeeper as she dodges through the aisle towards safety.

She sits down next to the birdcage steadying herself and then quickly opens the latch to grab the budgie before fleeing onto the safety of the street.

The main earthquake lasted just over 10 seconds, but the woman and her family were reportedly safe.

More than 130 aftershocks have been recorded since the 6th February quake, which has left at least six dead and 254 injured, tilting too buildings and collapsing two others - the Yun Men Tsui Ti residential and commercial complex as well as the Marshal Hotel.

As of 5pm local time on 7th February, rescue efforts in Hualien had been suspended by the emergency operation centre, which cited safety concerns over the increased tilting of the collapsed Yun Men Tsui Ti building.

A reported 88 people are still unaccounted for, but the figure may be reduced in the coming days as at 32 people were registered as living in two badly damaged residential buildings, which were searched and found to be empty.

The earthquake struck at sea 18.3 kilometres (11.37 miles) north of Hualien County Hall in East Taiwan, at a shallow depth of just 10 kilometres (6.21 miles).

It has been described as Taiwan’s strongest earthquake in nearly two decades.

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