Another eight people were wounded and three others trapped due to landslides on the outskirts of Quito, Xinhua reported, citing Equador's Geophysical Institute as saying.
"Firemen are working to evacuate the wounded and to find and rescue the people who are trapped," the government's National Risk Control Agency said via Twitter, without giving details.
The Ecuadorian government said they have closed roads around the capital and shut the Quito airport in case of more landslides.
The quake occurred at 02.58 p.m. The US Geological Survey said the moderate quake was only 7.7 km deep, with its epicentre located 22 km northeast of Quito, a city of some 1.6 million inhabitants.