A magnitude-6.4 quake struckTaiwan's northeastern coast Tuesday, causing buildings to collapse and bury people beneath debris.
The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake struck late Tuesday about 21 kilometres (13 miles) northeast of Hualien, on the island's east coast.
Rescue efforts are underway as emergency services scramble to reach people potentially trapped in a partially collapsed hotel building after a 6.0 magnitude natural disaster struck close to the city of Hualien on Taiwan's east coast.
Some 88 soldiers were helping the local fire service respond at the hotel, and another 250 were on standby to help.
Another 5.1 magnitude tremor was felt shortly after.
USA geologists said it was the latest in a string of quakes to hit the region in recent days.
The Hualien Shangxiao Road Community Apartment suffered severe damage and was tilted 45 degrees, the first and second floors nearly completely crushed, Taiwan News reported.
The Marshal Hotel on Gongyuan Road in Hualien City suffered major subsidence to the extent that the fourth floor is now level with the first floor.
On February 6, 2016, an natural disaster with a magnitude of 6.4 struck 28 km northeast of Pingtung City in southern Taiwan.
Four other buildings, including two hotels and a military hospital, had also tilted and two bridges in the city were either cracked or could not be used, the government said.
Some are still trapped inside of the half-collapsed hotel and are shining the torches on their phones so responders know they're there. Firefighters are continuing to deal with gas leaks and fires as a result of the quake.
Taiwan lies near the junction of two tectonic plates and is regularly hit by earthquakes.
There are now 80 New Zealanders registered on SafeTravel as being in Taiwan.
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