Recent reports say the death toll from the earthquake has reached 77 people. 588 people have been injured.
According to the El Telegrafo newspaper, 16 people were killed in the city of Portoviejo, 10 died in the city of Manta and two others became victims of the quake in the Guayas province.
Tremors were recorded at 11:58 p.m. UTC time (02:58 MSK). According to the USGS, the epicenter of the quake was 17 miles away from the coastal town of Muisne and just over 100 miles away from the capital Quito.
Glas also reportedly announced the state of emergency throughout the country in connection with the natural disaster.
Damage in Quito, Ecuador from the 7.8 magnitude earthquake. pic.twitter.com/h5l2Q4KsWS— Scott Meiklejohn (@ScottyTWN) April 17, 2016
Hazardous tsunami waves of up to one meter (3.2 feet) above the tide level are possible in Ecuador, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) said in a forecast after a powerful earthquake shook the coast of the country.
“Tsunami waves reaching 0.3 to 1 meters above the tide level are possible for some coasts of Ecuador,” the PTWC said in a statement.