Post-quake chaos in Ecuador in 10 heart-wrenching photos (GRAPHIC)

People walk along a street after a 7.8-magnitude quake in Portoviejo, Ecuador on April 17, 2016. © Juan Cevallos
Harrowing images from Ecuador reveal the devastation caused by the worst earthquake in the South American nation in 37 years.

WARNING: YOU MAY FIND SOME OF THE PICTURES DISTURBING

Two hundred and thirty eight people were killed and around 1,500 injured in a disaster, which hit Ecuador's Pacific coast, 170 kilometers northwest of the country’s capital, Quito, on Saturday.

People walk by damaged buildings after an earthquake struck off Ecuador's Pacific coast, at Tarqui neighborhood in Manta April 17, 2016. © Guillermo Granja

It is unclear how many remain trapped in the debris, with numerous homes having been reduced to rubble in Manta, Portoviejo, Pedernales, Guayaquil and other coastal cities and villages.

Police officers stand on debris after an earthquake struck off Ecuador's Pacific coast, at Tarqui neighborhood in Manta April 17, 2016. © Guillermo Granja

A massive rescue operation involving emergency workers, soldiers, police and volunteers in underway across the country. 

A man walks next to rubble at a street after a 7.8-magnitude quake in Portoviejo, Ecuador on April 17, 2016 © Juan Cevallos

It’s the worst disaster of its kind in Ecuador since the earthquake of 1979, in which 600 people were killed and 20,000 injured.

People gather next to a collapsed house in Guayaquil on April 17, 2016. © Jose Sanchez L

View of a fallen building after a 7.8-magnitude quake in Portoviejo, Ecuador on April 17, 2016. © Juan Cevallos

People walk past a car squashed by rubble after a 7.8-magnitude quake in Portoviejo, Ecuador on April 17, 2016. © Juan Cevallos

View of rubble after a 7.8-magnitude quake in Portoviejo, Ecuador on April 17, 2016. © Juan Cevallos

Police officers uncover the body of a victim after an earthquake struck off Ecuador's Pacific coast, at Tarqui neighborhood in Manta April 17, 2016. © Guillermo Granja

A police officer retrieves the body of a victim after an earthquake struck off Ecuador's Pacific coast, at Tarqui neighborhood in Manta April 17, 2016. © Guillermo Granja