Update 02/08 4:15 pm: Contrary to prior reports stating that Hualien's Parkview Hotel (美侖飯店) had collapsed, the hotel is reportedly intact and its guests did not sustain any serious injuries, therefor the number of major buildings which have collapsed from the quake has been revised to four.
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- A magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck off the coast of Hualien at 11:50 p.m. Tuesday night (Feb. 6) causing dramatic shaking throughout Taiwan, with Hualien suffering the brunt of the quake and four major buildings have collapsed, two bridges closed and sections of two highways have been shut off to traffic.
The epicenter of Tuesday's quake was 18.3 northeast of Hualien County hall at a shallow depth of 10 kilometers, according to Central Weather Bureau (CWB) and was the 94th earthquake since a spate of quakes started on Sunday. As this was the biggest of all 94 earthquakes, the CWB believes this was actually the main quake that the previous tremors were building up to, but only time will tell.
Four major buildings have collapsed in Hualien City, including the Marshal Hotel (統帥大飯店) on Gongyuan Road, Platinum Twin Star (白金雙星) Building on Guosheng 6th Street, Wu-ju-wu-shu (吾居吾宿) Building on Guosheng 6th Street, and Yun Men Tsui Ti Building (雲門翠堤) on Shangxiao Street.
Floors one through three of the Marshal Hotel have been completely flattened, with two employees who were on the first floor yet to be accounted for. Most of the dozens of guests in the building were fortunately staying on the fifth floor and above, and no guests have been reported missing thus far.
The Yun Men Tsui Ti Building has suffered severe damage and is titled 30 degrees with the first and second floors almost completely crushed. Rescue workers estimate that there are roughly 85 households in the community.
Two people are reported to have lost their lives, 173 are missing and 219 have been injured. Of the 173 missing, 147 people are trapped in the 12-story Yun Men Tsui Ti (雲門翠堤大樓) residential complex which partially collapsed and titled 45 degrees, reported Apple Daily.
Two bridges in Hualien City have been damaged and sealed off, including the Qixingtian Bridge. As multiple landslides have occurred along the Suhua Highway, it has been closed to traffic.
As many landslides have occurred along the Central Cross-Island Highway as well, only Provincial Highway 11 remains passable in the area.
Multiple aftershocks are continuing to strike the area.
The the power of this quake resulted in an intensity level of 7 being felt in Hualien County and Yilan County, a level of 5 being felt on Nantou's Hehuanshan, and a level of 4 being felt in Taichung City and Yunlin County. Meanwhile, an intensity level of 3 was felt in Taoyuan City, Hsingchu County, Taitung County, Taipei City, New Taipei City, Nantou County, Chiayi County, Changhua County, Yunlin County, Miaoli County, and Tainan City.
Located along the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire, Taiwan uses an intensity scale of 1 to 7, which gauges the degree to which a quake is felt in a specific location.