A magnitude 6.4 earthquake strikes Taiwan and leaves at least 2 dead after collapsing several buildings

A magnitude 6.4 earthquake strikes Taiwan and leaves at least 2 dead after collapsing several buildings

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A strong earthquake of magnitude 6.4 shook the eastern city of Hualien, in Taiwan, on Tuesday night (local time).

The earthquake occurred northwest of Hualien at 23:50 (15:50 GMT), according to the United States Geological Survey.

Local media reported that several buildings were damaged, including a hotel that collapsed on one of its sides.

The authorities said there are at least 2 people dead and a hundred injured.

A collapsed building in Hualien Photo: Kulas
Image captionA six-storyhotel was partially collapsed on one of its sides. (Photo: Kulas)
A street with damages after the earthquake Photo: Samuel Kuo
Image captionSeveral streets in Haulien were damaged by the earthquake. (Photo: Samuel Kuo)

Emergency services are working to free people who were trapped in the hotel, according to reports.

Photographs posted on social networks also showed damage to roads and tall buildings.

The island of Taiwan is near the junction of two tectonic plates in East Asia , so earthquakes are common.

Last Sunday, another five shallow tremors occurred in the same region, off the east coast of Taiwan.

Map of Hualien

Quoted by the EFE news agency, seismologist Lee Chyi-tyi said Monday that the island has entered a 100-year seismic cycle.

The most deadly earthquake in Taiwan in recent decades was one of magnitude 7.6 occurred in September 1999 , which left one or more 2,400 dead.

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