6.0-magnitude quake in Ecuador damages houses, hospitals

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A powerful earthquake measuring 6.0 on the Richter scale hit Ecuador’s coastal province of Esmeraldas, damaging residences, hospitals, and public buildings, authorities said.

The earthquake occurred at 11.28 p.m. on Saturday night at a depth of 10 km and 11.79 km from the city of Esmeraldas, with several aftershocks occurring, Xinhua news agency quoted the country’s Geophysical Institute as saying on Sunday.

According to initial evaluations, at least 28 homes were damaged and two destroyed, while three health centres and three public buildings were also affected, the National Risk and Emergency Management Service said.

The quake was felt in 11 of the 24 provinces of Ecuador and triggered a power outage in the city of Esmeraldas.

President Guillermo Lasso said on Twitter that in the face of the strong earthquake, the Esmeraldas Emergency Operations Committee had been activated to coordinate actions to care for the affected population.

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