Tuesday, 21 August, 2018

Quake strikes off coast of Taiwan, hotel collapses

AP  Tian Jun-hsiung AP Tian Jun-hsiung
| 07 February, 2018, 01:59

Rescue efforts are underway as emergency services scramble to reach people potentially trapped in a partially collapsed hotel building after a 6.0 magnitude quake struck close to the city of Hualien on Taiwan's east coastline Tuesday night.

The epicentre was very shallow at just 1km, the US Geological Survey said.

Meanwhile, no tsunami warning has been issued as result of quake. Emergency services were working to free them.

Jeff Lin with the Hualien Police Department described the other two structures as "city department buildings".

Images showed the collapsed Marshal Hotel slanted on its side, partially crumpled into the ground, as rescuers tried to pull people to safety.

Officials said the temblor killed two hotel employees.

Hualien is one of Taiwan's most popular tourist hubs as it lies on the picturesque east coast rail line and is near to popular Taroko Gorge.

A woman leaves the damaged Marshal Hotel in Hualien, eastern Taiwan, after a strong quake.

AP  Hualien County Fire Bureau
AP Hualien County Fire Bureau

A powerful natural disaster struck Taiwan's Hualien County Tuesday, according to the US Geological Survey.

"We didn't really know what to do", Ms Clarke told TVNZ 1's Breakfast.

Margaret K. Lewis, a Seton Hall University Law School professor living in Taipei, said she felt prolonged swaying at her modern high-rise apartment building in Beitou District, in the northern part of the city. "I wouldn't be surprised for there to be a number of aftershocks in the next couple of days".

"Everyone jumps at every jolt".

There are now 80 New Zealanders registered on SafeTravel as being in Taiwan.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said it had received no requests for consular assistance following the quake.

The quake took place at a depth of 1km (0.6 miles), the report says.

A group of Kiwis caught up in the magnitude-6.4 Taiwan quake ran from their hostel and straight for higher ground.


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