Buildings toppled, people trapped after powerful Taiwan quake

At least two people are dead and more than 140 more are injured after a powerful earthquake struck Taiwan.

Emergency officials are working to free a reported 30 people trapped inside a hotel in Hualien city, which partially collapsed in the 6.4 magnitude quake and is leaning precariously on a tilt.

It struck 20km off the east coast late Tuesday night (local time) and was only 1km deep.

Video emerging on social media shows roads with gaping holes and destroyed buildings. Locals can be heard screaming on the street as the dust settles.

Military spokesman Chen Chung-chi told media more than 300 military personnel have been deployed.

Taiwan lies on the junction of two tectonic plates, which earlier this week began to experience an influx in movement.

In 1999, more than 2400 people were killed on the island by a 7.6 magnitude earthquake.

Newshub.