Ecuador Earthquake

Volunteers serves food to children affected by the earthquake in Pedernales, Ecuador, Sunday, April 24, 2016. The earthquake damage has added to the already heavy economic hardships being felt in this OPEC nation because of a collapse in world oil prices. Before the quake, Ecuador was bracing for a bout of austerity, with the IMF forecasting the economy would shrink 4.5 percent this year. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

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The Logan LDS Institute is asking Cache Valley residents to pitch in items for a relief effort to earthquake-ridden Ecuador.

The Institute issued a challenge to Utah State University’s LDS students to fill a semi-trailer full of relief supplies, but the effort has so far fallen short, so an appeal is now being issued to the entire valley community.

Among items needed are baby formula, diapers, clothes (both adult and children’s sizes), shoes, blankets and nonperishable foods.

Donations can be taken to the Institute main office at 600 Darwin Ave. on the west side of the USU campus. Those with questions may phone Institute instructor Doug Maughan at 435-770-5357.

As of Saturday, April 23, the death toll from the prior week’s magnitude-7.8 earthquake that flattened towns along Ecuador’s coast had risen to 654 with another 58 people missing, according to the country’s government.

The website of the secretariat for risk management said that 113 people had been rescued alive following the quake and more than 25,000 people remained in shelters.

The death toll from Ecuador’s quake has surpassed that of Peru’s 2007 temblor, making it the deadliest quake in South America since one in Colombia in 1999 killed more than 1,000 people.

Hundreds of aftershocks have rattled the country since the April 16 quake and Ecuadoreans are still sleeping outside and struggling to find food and water. Aid is arriving from abroad, but relief workers have warned of delays in water distribution and said mosquito-borne illness could spread through the camps.

President Rafael Correa has said the quake caused $3 billion in damage and warned that the reconstruction effort will take years.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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