At least 14 dead in 6.8 magnitude earthquakes in Ecuador and Peru

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At least 14 people were killed and 381 injured in a 6.8 magnitude earthquake that destroyed buildings and smashed a car in Ecuador on Saturday afternoon. according to the Ecuadorian government. Tremors were felt as far north as Peru.

The earthquake occurred about five miles from the small coastal town of Balao, Ecuador, at a depth of nearly 41 miles, according to the US Geological Survey. It sent several buildings They plunged into the sea at a seaport in the tourist town of Jambelí, their sloping roofs hovering just meters above the waterline, as members of the Ecuadorian armed forces responded to the scene.

At least seven houses were destroyed and 50 others were affected by the quake, according to the Ecuadorian government called on Saturday. The facade of a building rained on a vehicle in Cuenca, killing at least one person and also affecting 17 educational buildings and 31 healthcare facilities.

The dome of the Virgen De La Nube church in La Troncal was severely fractured, leaving holes in the walls of its bell tower, photos posted to social media showed.

In Peru, local media reported that a 4-year-old girl was killed in the Tumbes region after her house collapsed, citing a statement by Peru’s Prime Minister Alberto Otárola.

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Ecuador has a history of deadly earthquakes and intense seismic activity. The country of around 17.8 million people experienced a massive magnitude 7.8 disaster in the northwest in 2016 that killed hundreds. Earthquakes in northern Ecuador also killed at least 1,000 people in 1987 in one of the world’s most devastating natural disasters.

Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso called On Saturday he visited the badly hit city of Machala, assessed the damage there and met with victims in a hospital.

“I wanted to express my solidarity with the families of the dead and the injured in the earthquake,” he said.

Samantha Schmidt contributed to this report.


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