2 Strong Earthquakes Shake Coastal Area in Northwestern Ecuador


Two strong earthquakes shook the northwestern coastal area of Ecuador on Sunday night, the latest aftershocks from a powerful tremor that killed hundreds of people in April. Authorities said there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries from the latest quakes.

The U.S. Geological Service measured the first quake at magnitude 5.9 and said it was centered about 41 kilometers (25.5 miles) south of the coastal city of Esmeraldas. The second quake measured 6.4 about 10 minutes later in the same area. Both tremors were about 35 kilometers (22 miles) below the surface.

Some slight shaking was felt in Ecuador’s capital of Quito, which is 153 kilometers (94 miles) to the southeast.

The quakes hit in the same general region on the Pacific coast where a magnitude 7.8 quake wrecked the town of Pedernales on April 16. That was Ecuador’s worst natural disaster in decades, killing 663 people and leaving nearly 29,000 homeless. Ecuador’s Geophysics Institute says there have been more than 2,100 aftershocks since then, including several around magnitude 6.