Cebuano in Taiwan: ‘We ran for our lives’

By Michelle Joy L. Padayhag |February 06,2016 - 11:34 PM

Machine operator Wilnar Ochada Paradiang was on graveyard shift at the second floor of Sumika Technology building in Tainan, Taiwan yesterday when the building shook.
Paradiang, 29, said his first thought was to get out of the building.

“It was really challenging. It was like a maze. The building moved from left to right,” Paradiang told Cebu Daily News through Facebook Messenger chat.

He and the other workers in the building panicked when debris started to fall.

“I ran. Many Taiwanese and other Filipinos also ran for their lives,” Paradiang said.

The ground shaking, logged at about 4 a.m. (local time) yesterday, stopped after about a minute.

Paradiang said he and the others gathered outside the building, trying to keep calm.

Joy Lourdes del Campo, a native of Barangay Kawit, Medellin, was still sleeping when the 6.4-magnitude quake rocked Tainan.

Del Campo, who works in a factory in Tainan, said she and another Filipina worker fell asleep after cleaning a cart in the fourth floor of their building.

They were roused from their sleep by the earthquake.

“As the shaking continued, I started to cry because I was so scared. I prayed really hard. I didn’t know where to go. I was standing and holding the cart,” she added.

Then everyone started running outside. Del Campo said she was shaking even after they got out of the building.

Eleven people were reported killed and some buildings collapsed.

As of last night, Paradiang said he has not experienced any aftershocks, but work was suspended for the day.

“The morning shift was suspended because of the damage to the building,” he said.

Paradiang’s dormitory, where he and other Filipino workers stay, remained safe. He said he will continue to report for work as soon as they are allowed to.

“I’m fine because this (earthquake) really happens. What’s important is that I and other fellow Cebuanos are safe,” he said.

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