QUITO, Ecuador – A strong earthquake struck off Ecuador's coast Friday evening, sending people running into the streets of the country's major cities. Authorities said there were no reports of casualties or serious damage.
The U.S. Geological Service said the tremor had a preliminary magnitude of 6.0 and was centered about 30 kilometers (20 miles) northeast of Bahia de Caraquez. The quake occurred about 7 kilometers (6 miles) below the Earth's surface.
Shaking was felt more than 200 kilometers (124 miles) away in the port city of Quayaquil and in the capital of Quito, and people ran from buildings in both cities.
Vicente Sanchez, director of an emergency operations center in one of the areas closest to the quake's epicenter, said the tremor was felt strongly but no one had called seeking rescue.
"People are a bit shaken up," he said.
The quake struck in the same region as a powerful, magnitude 7.8 temblor in April 2016 that caused nearly 700 deaths and $3 billion in damage.