Rescuers searching for survivors of this week's 6.4 magnitude quake that struck eastern Taiwan found two more bodies Friday afternoon, raising the death toll to 12 and narrowing the missing to a family of five from China.
The Canadian couple of Hong Kong origin were found in a partially collapsed inn that occupied the second and third floors of the 12-story Yun Men Tsui Ti building, which was left leaning at a steep angle after Tuesday's quake.
Local reports said their bodies were found locked in a final embrace amid the rubble.
The rescuers later continued searching for the family, who were also staying at the Beauty Inn. The bodies of four Chinese, two Taiwanese and a Filipino, all tourists, were earlier found there.
Three Taiwanese died elsewhere in the city, including an employee of the Marshal Hotel who was killed when the bottom level of the 11-story building caved in.
Hualien County Commissioner Fu Kun-chi said the final decision on how to proceed with the search beyond the critical 72-hour "golden window" would jointly be made by a team of experts and rescuers.
The powerful quake left two other buildings collapsed in Hualien.
Nine Japanese are among the 272 injured but their injuries are not life threatening, according to the Taiwan Foreign Ministry.
While power has been fully restored, about 8,100 families are still left without fresh water.
More than 260 aftershocks, many of them strong, have been recorded since Tuesday's main quake.
Situated at the convergence of two major tectonic plates on the western Pacific Rim, Taiwan is prone to seismic activity.
On the same day in 2016, a magnitude 6.6 quake hit the southern city of Tainan in the predawn hours, killing 117 people, including 115 from the collapse of a 16-story apartment building in the downtown area.
A magnitude 7.7 temblor hit the central county of Nantou in September 1999, killing more than 2,400 people.
In addition to sending a team of experts, Japan has raised more than 60 million yen from individual donors on Yahoo! Japan.
Other countries are also assisting the relief efforts in different forms. Singapore sent two military planes to provide relief materials such as tents and medical supplies.
China's Red Cross has pledged NT$4.6 million (about $157,000) in emergency funds, while the central government's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits and its coastal province of Fujian, which lies just across the Taiwan Strait, have each pledged equivalent amounts.