Rescuers are seen entering a building that collapsed onto its side from an early morning 6.4 magnitude earthquake in Hualien County, eastern Taiwan, Wednesday, Feb. 7 2018. Rescue workers are searching for any survivors trapped inside the building. (AP Photo/Tian Jun-hsiung)
Rescuers are seen entering a building that collapsed onto its side from an early morning 6.4 magnitude earthquake in Hualien County, eastern Taiwan, Wednesday, Feb. 7 2018. Rescue workers are searching for any survivors trapped inside the building. (AP Photo/Tian Jun-hsiung)

Two dead and 114 injured after twin tremors strike Asian city

TWO people have been killed and more than 100 are injured after two earthquakes struck Taiwan.

The island's Premier, William Lai, confirmed 114 people had sustained "light or severe injuries" and others were reportedly trapped inside collapsed buildings.

The east coast of Taiwan was struck by a 6.5-magnitude earthquake overnight.
The east coast of Taiwan was struck by a 6.5-magnitude earthquake overnight.

The deaths were reported after a hotel in Hualien collapsed following the 6.4-magnitude tremor, which struck 13 miles north-east of the city and at a depth of 5.9 miles, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS).

It hit shortly before midnight local time.
 


A second earthquake, of magnitude 5.2, hit not far from the one that caused destruction a few hours earlier. The USGS said it had hit at a depth of 4.2 miles.

Those tremors followed a magnitude 6.1 earthquake that struck on Sunday.

Images posted on social media appeared to show pillars holding up the Marshal Hotel in Gongyuan Road, Hualien, had collapsed, bringing the higher floors of the building onto street level.

A separate hotel known as the Beautiful Life Hotel was also shown tilting.

"The President [Tsai Ing-wen] has asked the cabinet and related ministries to immediately launch the 'disaster mechanism' and to work at the fastest rate on disaster relief work," the President's office said in a statement.

 

Taiwan's official Central News Agency reported that the ground floor of the Marshal Hotel had caved in and people were trapped inside. It posted photos showing a road fractured in several parts.

Several buildings in Hualien were tilting or caved in, according to the outlet.

The agency quoted a spokesman of Taiwan's Executive Yuan, the governing cabinet's office, as saying that search teams from other areas were headed to Hualien.

Taiwan lies on the Pacific "ring of fire" where earthquakes are common.



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