Death Toll from Taiwan Quake Rises to 9

Rescuers are seen entering a building that collapsed onto its side from an early morning 6.4 magnitude earthquake in Hualien County eastern Taiwan

Rescuers are seen entering a building that collapsed onto its side from an early morning 6.4 magnitude earthquake in Hualien County eastern Taiwan

Still, even amid dust and heavy rain and shattered glass, the scale of the devastation was becoming clear as night settled in: At least 10 people have died, more than 260 are injured and almost 60 remain missing, according to and figures from the National Fire Agency.

People severely injured in the quake would receive NT$250,000, including NT$100,000 from the foundation, NT$100,000 from the county government and NT$50,000 from the ministry, the premier said. At least six of the nine confirmed dead so far perished there.

A total of 67 people are still missing.

At the school, people slept bundled up in heavy blankets and wearing coats and caps. An quake with a magnitude of 6.1 struck nearby on Sunday.

"At first it wasn't that big. Right now we don't know what will happen". It was followed by several aftershocks. Two shelters have been set up.

Jason Grenier, a Canadian living with his Taiwanese wife and daughter just south of Hualien, said Wednesday that their home is intact and they have power and water.

Officials from Hualien fire department said 149 people had been rescued from damaged buildings. The women prepared soup and rice noodles for police officers and firefighters working in the cold rain early Thursday. The floors below her seemed to collapse, and when the dust had cleared, she said, she looked out a broken window and found she essentially was on the ground floor.

The grey tile and glass building sits next to a park along the Meilun River.

Two employees of the hotel were killed in the disaster CNA said. Taiwan’s National Fire Agency said rescuers freed another employee from the rubble
Two employees of the hotel were killed in the disaster CNA said. Taiwan’s National Fire Agency said rescuers freed another employee from the rubble

Authorities in Hualien have began investigating the 12-storey Yun Men Tsui Ti building which left leaning at more than 30 degrees after the quake. She was pulled from the wrecked building and later died in hospital.

Rescuers used steel supports to prop up the listing building.

The bottom floors of another building, the Marshal Hotel, also collapsed.

As of Wednesday morning 145 people were unaccounted for, according to CNA, Taiwan's official news agency, with four buildings in the area either tilting or already collapsed.

The three mainland victims were all believed to be staying at the Beauty Stay Hotel, which was located on the second floor of the apartment block.

The government said the natural disaster took place late on Wednesday near Hualien, the same area as a strong quake on Tuesday and where recovery efforts are still ongoing.

Chen Kuo-chang, the acting director of the Central Weather Bureau's Seismology Center, said the seismic pattern was stronger than anything previously recorded in the area.

Bridges and highways remain closed pending inspections as the force of the tremors twisted roads and many have damaged bridge foundations.

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