At least four people died after a magnitude The 6.8 earthquake struck southern Ecuador on Saturday afternoon, the country’s government said in a statement.
The earthquake struck the southern city of Baláo and was more than 40 miles (65 km) deep. according to the United States Geological Survey.
One person died in the city of Cuenca, in Azuay province, when a wall collapsed on top of their car, and three more people died on Jambelí Island, in El Oro province, when a security camera tower collapsed, authorities said.
The USGS issued an “orange warning” to the quake, saying “significant casualties are likely and disaster may be widespread.”
“Previous events at this alert level required a regional or national level response,” the USGS added. It also estimated damage and economic losses were possible.
Relatives of a DailyExpertNews producer in TThe western port city of Guayaquil said they felt “very strong” tremors.
DailyExpertNews affiliate Ecuavisa reported structural damage to buildings in Cuenca, one of the country’s largest cities. The historic city is on the UN list of World Heritage Sites.
There is no tsunami warning for the area, according to the US National Weather Service.
Guayaquil and Cuenca airports remained open and operational, the country’s statement said.