At least four people have died after a scale A 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck southern Ecuador on Saturday afternoon, the country’s government said in a statement.
The earthquake struck near the southern town of Baláo and was more than 65 km (nearly 41 miles) deep, according to the United States Geological Survey.
One person died in the city of Cuenca, in the province of Azuay, when a wall collapsed on his car, and three other people died on the island of Jambelí, in the province of El Oro, when a security camera tower collapsed, authorities said.
The USGS gave the quake an “orange alert”, stating that “significant casualties are likely and the disaster is potentially widespread”.
“Past events at this alert level have required a response at the regional or national level,” the USGS added. He also felt that damage and economic loss were possible.
Relatives of a CNN producer in youhe western port city of Guayaquil said it felt “very strong” tremors.
CNN affiliate Ecuavisa reported structural damage to buildings in Cuenca, one of the country’s largest cities. The historic city is in the United Nations list of World Heritage Sites.
There is no tsunami warning in effect for the area, according to the US National Weather Service.
Guayaquil and Cuenca airports remained open and operational, according to the country’s statement.