6.0 earthquake strikes off coast of Ecuador
An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.0 has struck near the coast of Ecuador.
The US Geological Survey says the epicenter is about 20 kilometers from Bahia de Caraquez.
The quake, which had a depth of 24 kilometers, happened at around 1120 GMT (6:20 AM EST) today. Bahia de Caraquez is about 360 kilometers west of Ecuador's capital, Quito.
It wasn't immediately clear if there were any injuries or damage in the South American country. Authorities said that there wasn't a risk of a tsunami and appealed for calm.
They also expressed optimism that Ecuadoreans were better prepared for a natural disaster after rebuilding from last year's magnitude 7.8 quake along the Pacific coast that left more than 600 people dead and thousands more injured and homeless.