Ecuador continues recovery efforts following powerful quake

Updated: 2016-04-21 09:15


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Ecuador continues recovery efforts following powerful quake

An aerial view is seen of Pedernales, after an earthquake struck off Ecuador's Pacific coast, April 20, 2016. [Photo/Xinhua]

QUITO - Ecuador continued its recovery efforts amid strong afterschocks on Wednesday, after a powerful 7.8-magnitude quake on Saturday devastated several coastal provinces.

A magnitude-6.1 aftershock rattled residents along the coast Wednesday. But rescuers still pulled out three people who had been trapped by rubble in the town of Pedernales, the epicenter of the quake.

The death toll stands at 525, but is expected to rise as 163 remained missing, while the number of injured has reached 5,733, according to state news agency Andes.

As part of efforts to facilitate the recovery efforts, the Ecuadorian government set up a website and a toll-free telephone number for those who want to make a donation: or 1-800-002-002.

Both provide information for making donations from anywhere in the world and in any currency.

Donations can also be made to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), which said it delivered a 60-ton cargo of aid to Ecuador on Wednesday via a chartered plane, or directly to the Ecuadorian Red Cross:

"We are working on a very big operation in six provinces that are among the most affected," the IFRC's regional director for the Americas, Walter Cotte, said in a press release.

"The Ecuadorian Red Cross will focus its response in rural and remote areas and on providing support to vulnerable groups, wound management and psychosocial support," Cotte added.

The Red Cross aid included 6,000 blankets, 3,000 tarpaulins, 1,500 tents, 1,000 hygiene kits, 1,000 cleaning kits, and 600 household kits.

International response to what Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa described as the country's "biggest emergency in almost 70 years," has been notable, Andes said.

Some 942 rescue workers from 20 countries were taking part in the recovery efforts, alongside Ecuadorian police and armed forces.