By Senabri Silvestre
SANTO DOMINGO, Dom. Rep. (AA) – At least six people were wounded Wednesday in Ecuador, after a new earthquake struck the same area affected by a tremor that last month killed hundreds.
The epicenter of the magnitude-6.7 quake was located 34 kilometers (21 miles) northwest of the town of Rosa Zárate, in the province of Esmeraldas at 2.56 a.m. (GMT0756), according to the United States Geological Survey.
The shock was felt as far away as cities in Colombia, including Pasto and Tumaco, on the border with Ecuador. No damage has been reported.
Security Minister Cesar Navas said during a press conference that one victim was hurt when a wall collapsed. The other five were injured as they ran for cover.
“The country is in calm with minor damage and slightly injured. After the evaluation, we decided to deactivate the National Emergency Committee installed immediately after the event”, according to President Rafael Correa.
He said the latest tremor was an aftershock of the April 16 quake that killed 660 victims and urged residents to stay calm, but to be prepared.
“The country is more prepared than ever to face these kind of events,” he said. “Unfortunately we are facing a very large impact caused by nature, and aftershocks do not stop alarm or concern, but again you have to be calm.”
Residents should sleep peacefully in Quito, Correa said. In Manabí and Esmeralda aftershocks are normal and, he encouraged inhabitants to be prepared by sleeping with flashlights, water and food.
He added that daily activities would take place as normal, including school attendance.
Ecuador has experienced at least 1,504 aftershocks since last month’s quake, according to Alexandra Alvarado, the director of the country’s Seismology Geophysics agency.