After strong Ecuador quake kills hundreds, search and rescue continues

Latin America

Ecuador EarthquakeParamedics transfer an injured person after an earthquake in Portoviejo, Ecuador, Sunday, April 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Carlos Sacoto)

Rescuers and aid from all over the world flooded into Ecuador as survivors started a second day in towns flattened by the quake, and the search for people trapped beneath the rubble continued after the devastating earthquake shook the country on Saturday.

CCTV America’s Dan Collyns reports.

Thousands of people are sleeping outside without electricity after Ecuador earthquake

Rescuers and aid from all over the world flooded into Ecuador as survivors started a second day in towns flattened by the quake, and the search for people trapped beneath the rubble continued after the devastating earthquake shook the country on Saturday. CCTV America's Dan Collyns reports.

The 7.8-magnitude earthquake left a trail of ruin along Ecuador’s normally placid Pacific Ocean coast, buckling highways, knocking down an air traffic control tower and flattening homes and buildings.

At least 400 people died, including two Canadians, and thousands are homeless. The Spanish Red Cross said as many as 100,000 people may need assistance.

Residents sleep under a makeshift tent outside the emergency center in the town of Portoviejo, Ecuador, Sunday, April 17, 2016. Parts of Ecuador have been devastated by the country's strongest earthquake in decades, as the death toll continues to rise and people left homeless prepare to sleep outside for second straight night. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

Residents sleep under a makeshift tent outside the emergency center in the town of Portoviejo, Ecuador, Sunday, April 17, 2016. Parts of Ecuador have been devastated by the country’s strongest earthquake in decades, as the death toll continues to rise and people left homeless prepare to sleep outside for second straight night. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

Ecuador’s Foreign Affairs Minister Guillaume Long said hundreds of international aid workers are already in place. Mexico has sent 120 helpers, Spain sent 80 rescue experts and Chile sent 49 firefighters. Missions have also arrived from Peru, Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela, and Switzerland.


Christy Delafield on Ecuador earthquake

CCTV America’s Mike Walter spoke to Christy Delafield, senior communications officer at Mercy Corps, about the Ecuador earthquake and its aftermath.

Christy Delafield on Ecuador earthquake

CCTV America's Mike Walter spoke to Christy Delafield, senior communications officer at Mercy Corps, about the Ecuador earthquake and its aftermath.

Secretary of State John Kerry said the U.S. will help in any way possible.

Chinese President Xi Jinping sent a message of condolences to President Rafael Correa on Monday.

In the message, Xi mourned the dead and extended condolences to families of the victims and those injured.

International aid groups have dispatched doctors and psychologists, and dogs trained to search for survivors. Workers are also setting up plants to clean drinking water.

Ecuador’s Geophysics Institute said 230 aftershocks had hit as of Sunday night, ranging in magnitude from 3.5 to 6.1 and striking at shallow depths.

As Ecuador began to dig out from its strongest earthquake in decades, tales of devastating loss were everywhere amid the rubble. It buckled highways, knocked down an air traffic control tower and flattened homes and buildings.

Vehicles from a car dealership hang on a precipice caused by an earthquake induced landslide in Portoviejo, Ecuador, Sunday, April 17, 2016. The strongest earthquake to hit Ecuador in decades flattened buildings and buckled highways along its Pacific coast, sending the Andean nation into a state of emergency. (AP Photo/Juan Fernando Molina)

Vehicles from a car dealership hang on a precipice caused by an earthquake induced landslide in Portoviejo, Ecuador, Sunday, April 17, 2016. The strongest earthquake to hit Ecuador in decades flattened buildings and buckled highways along its Pacific coast, sending the Andean nation into a state of emergency. (AP Photo/Juan Fernando Molina)

Portoviejo, a provincial capital of nearly 300,000, was among the hardest hit, with the town’s mayor reporting at least 100 deaths. Among them are 17-year-old Sayira Quinde, her mother, father, and toddler brother, crushed when a building collapsed on their car.

A grief-stricken aunt, Johana Estupinan, is now heading to the town of Esmeraldas, where she will bury her loved ones and break the news to her sister’s three now-orphaned children. The Quinde family had driven to her house from their home hours north to drop off Sayira before she was to start classes at a public university on a scholarship to study medicine.

The aunt said “I never thought my life would be destroyed in a minute.”