Photo: YIUCHEUNG/Shutterstock

One of China’s Tallest Skyscrapers Started Shaking, Prompting Panicked Evacuations

by Eben Diskin May 19, 2021

Skyscrapers often seem like unshakable fixtures of a city’s landscape, as if firmly rooted to the ground. Not so for one of China’s tallest skyscrapers, which was evacuated on Tuesday after it started inexplicably shaking.

The 980-foot high SEG Plaza in Shenzhen, in southern China, is home to several offices and a large electronics market, and the sudden shaking sent shoppers into a panic.

Social media videos quickly surfaced showing people fleeing the scene.

Officials are still investigating what caused the tower to wobble but have already ruled out the possibility of an earthquake.

In separate social media posts, officials said, “After checking and analyzing the data of various earthquake monitoring stations across the city, there was no earthquake in Shenzhen today,” and that experts “found no safety abnormalities in the main structure and surrounding environment of the building,” The Guardian reported

SEG Plaza was completed in 2000, and named after the semiconductor and electronics manufacturer whose offices are located in the tower. Just last year, Chinese authorities banned the construction of skyscrapers exceeding 1,640 feet, though the new rule was implemented for aesthetic reasons rather than safety.

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