A 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal on Saturday, killing over a thousand people and triggering a deadly avalanche on Mount Everest.
The earthquake, the worst to hit the country in 80 years, caused massive destruction in the Himalayan nation, including destroying a 19th-century tower in the capital Kathmandu.
Nepali police report that 1,130 people were killed, according to Reuters. The death toll is likely to rise.
The tremors rocked neighboring countries, killing 34 in northern India, six in Tibet and two in Bangladesh, as well as two Chinese people on the Nepal-China border, according to the Associated Press.
The earthquake’s epicenter was 50 miles east of Nepal’s second largest city, Pokhara. It caused an avalanche on Mount Everest that left eight people dead, Reuters reported. A climber at Everest base camp, Alex Gavan, wrote on Twitter:
“Running for life from my tent. Unhurt. Many many people up the mountain.”
Nepali authorities struggled to assess the full scale of the damage, but many feared the worst.
“Almost the entire country has been hit,” the deputy chief of mission at Nepal’s Embassy in New Delhi Krishna Prasad Dhakal said. Officials warned the death toll is likely to rise.
“We are totally cut off from most parts of our country,” Nepal Disaster Management Authority official Ram Narayan Pandey told Reuters.
In Kathmandu, The Guardian reported that thousands of people rushed onto the streets after the quake in an effort to try to remain safe, and many were too afraid to return after a series of powerful aftershocks.
Among the buildings that collapsed was the Dharahara Tower, a UNESCO-recognized landmark built in 1832 and a popular visitor site. Around 200 people were trapped when the tower collapsed, police said.
source: huffingtonpost.com By Charlotte Alfred