Survivors freed from Ecuador quake rubble after more than 32 hours

Rescuers in Ecuador pulled out three people alive after they were trapped for more than 32 hours in the rubble of a shopping centre flattened by Saturday's 7.8 magnitude earthquake.

To reach the survivors, firefighters cut a 2.5ft hole between the floor and roof of the shopping centre and pulled the survivors out head first.

Firefighters cheered and applauded as the two women and one man were pulled from the debris.

All three were rushed in ambulances to a nearby hospital.

The rescues gave Ecuadoreans hope that scores of people still unaccounted for may yet be found even as the death toll from the 7.8--magnitude quake rose to 413.