Magnitude Quake Hits Taiwan, At Least 2 Dead

Magnitude Quake Hits Taiwan, At Least 2 Dead

Photos on Apple Daily showed a man calling for help from the window of another building and wires dangling from the collapsed ceiling of a local hospital.

A damaged vehicle stands in rubble outside the Marshal Hotel in Hualien, eastern Taiwan early February 7, 2018.

Emily Clarke and friends were staying at a hostel in an area just out of Hualien when the quake struck this morning about 11.50pm local time (4.50am NZT). Emergency services are working to free anyone trapped inside the building, media reports said.

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Another building had also collapsed in Hualien but it was not clear whether any people had been trapped there.

Rescuers are seen entering damaged buildings after the quake.

Officials from Hualien fire department said 149 people had been rescued from damaged buildings. "I wouldn't be surprised for there to be a number of aftershocks in the next couple of days".

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

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake struck late Tuesday about 21 kilometers (13 miles) northeast of Hualien, on the island's east coast. The quake, which was one of the deadliest in the world had struck about 30 km south of the Iraqi town Darbandikhan, near the north-eastern border with Iran.

A magnitude-6.4 quake has rocked Taiwan's east coast, following a "swarm" of 19 earthquakes over the past 48 hours.

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Dashcam footage has caught the horrifying moment boulders start falling onto cars after an natural disaster hit Taiwan.

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