Rescuers pull ninth body from rubble of Hualien earthquake

Taipei, Feb. 8 (CNA) Rescuers removed the body of a 64-year-old man from the rubble of a partly collapsed building in Hualien on Thursday, 35 hours after a 6.0 magnitude earthquake struck the eastern Taiwan county.

The recovery of the body of Chiang Chen-chang (???), a security guard at the Beauty Inn hostel in the building, brought the quake's death toll to nine.

Rescue workers had been digging through the debris for six hours after they spotted the back of a head in the rubble at the site of the partly collapsed Yun Men Tsui Ti building, according to Central Emergency Operation Center.

After digging down 20 meters into the rubble, the rescue workers at 11:27 a.m. Thursday reached Chiang, who appeared to have died at the reception desk on what was the first floor of the 12 story building, the center said.

The Beauty Inn backpackers' hostel at which he worked as a security guard occupied the first three floors of the building.

"I was trying to call him, but I couldn't reach him," a friend of his said on TVBS, a local news station.

Chiang's daughter also said she had been trying to contact him since the earthquake occurred close to midnight Tuesday and had rushed to the site of the Yun Men Tsui Ti building when she learned that he had been located.

Chiang, 64, was also a member of the citizen volunteer patrol with the Feng Chuan police precinct, according his friend.

His demise brought the death toll in the earthquake to nine, while people remained missing as of 4:30 p.m. Thursday. Some 270 people were injured in the earthquake, which has been followed by numerous aftershocks since Tuesday night.

Source: Focus Taiwan