A magnitude 6.1 earthquake hit the southern Pacific coast of Guatemala late on Friday, causing some residents to flee their homes and resulting in early reports of damage to buildings.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) confirmed the earthquake, which was also felt in El Salvador.

Fortunately, there were no reports of injuries immediately after the quake, which occurred just past midnight while many people were asleep.

Officials in El Salvador described the earthquake as "strong" and said they were closely monitoring the situation.

The epicentre of the earthquake was near the town of Taxisco, Guatemala, which is located about 60 miles (100 km) south of the capital city, Guatemala City.

Alarms sounded in the city, and many frightened residents were forced to evacuate their homes.

According to the Guatemala emergency services agency CONRED, parts of the facade of a church in the town of San Pablo Jocopilas, northwest of the quake's epicentre, fell.

The USGS reported that the quake struck at a depth of 108 km (67 miles).