TAIWAN, Feb 7 – A hotel on the east coast of Taiwan has collapsed after a 6.4-magnitude earthquake, the government said. Citing the national fire agency, Taiwan’s cabinet said another hotel had also been damaged.
Local media reported a number of buildings had toppled with around 30 people trapped in the collapsed hotel. The earthquake was the latest in a string that have hit the region in recent days.
The quake hit at 23:50 pm (3.50pm GMT) around 21 kilometres (13 miles) northeast of the port city Hualien, according to the United States Geological Survey.
The government confirmed that the hotel had collapsed, but few further details were immediately available. Emergency services are working to free anyone trapped inside the building, media reports said.
The island’s weather bureau recorded the quake as 6.0-magnitude. On Sunday, another five shallow tremors struck within two hours of each other in the same area off Taiwan’s east coast.
Taiwan lies near the junction of two tectonic plates and is regularly hit by earthquakes. The island’s worst tremor in recent decades was a 7.6-magnitude quake in September 1999 that killed around 2,400 people.