Aftershocks rattle Taiwan as quake toll rises

Workers try to shore up tilted buildings after Taiwan quake

Aftershocks rattle Taiwan as quake toll rises

A man has been rescued from the basement of the Marshal Hotel (統帥飯店) in Hualien City after being trapped when building collapsed following a magnitude 6.0 quake that struck just off the coast of eastern Taiwan's Hualien County late last night (Feb. 6), while two other coworkers are alive but still trapped inside, reported CNA.

The 6.5-magnitude quake occurred at 11.50 pm on Tuesday night with its epicentre located at 18.3 kilometres north-northeast of the city of Hualien, Efe news reported.

Taiwan has been hit by a 5.7 magnitude natural disaster on the eastern coast of the island - just a day after a powerful quake killed seven and left rescue workers scrambling to free trapped survivors from buildings that caved in.

The Taiwanese government earlier reported that at least four persons died and about 200 were injured in the incident. Numerous missing were believed to be trapped in the 12-story Yun Men Tsui Ti building, which housed a small hotel, apartments and a hot-pot restaurant. The forest officials are not sure of number of people still trapped inside.

It was initially feared as many as 150 people may have been missing in the rubble.

Japan's Foreign Ministry said nine Japanese were among the injured.

An hour later, Fan, an employee of the city government, was volunteering at the arena, the first of the two shelters to open.

Tenants and their furniture were flung across their apartments in the damaged building.

Considering the expected protracted time required to complete the rescue mission and restoration work, Lai said that all Cabinet agencies would do their utmost to "tide Hualien over".

The top priority is to save as many lives as possible, Tsai said after she was briefed by county government officials and military personnel who were participating in rescue efforts.

About 40,000 homes are without water, and highways and bridges have been are closed.

"Rescue operations have been continuing night and day".

Hualien is home to about 100,000 people.

The Manila Economic and Cultural Office (Meco) has confirmed that a Filipino is missing following a 6.4-magnitude quake that struck Hualien County.

More than 100 earthquakes have hit off Taiwan's east coast in the past three days.

Five people were later found guilty over the disaster, including the developer and two architects, for building an inadequate structure.

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