Nepal has been left devastated after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit on Saturday. It is reported the death toll is currently around four thousand three hundred people.
8 million people in 39 districts have been affected, 2 million people of which live in the 11 severely affected districts according to the latest report from the UN Office of the Resident Co-ordinator.
The quake’s epicentre was around 49 miles north-west of Kathmandu in one of the world’s most active seismic zones – the transglobal mountain belt – which stretches from the Pyrenees to the hills of south-east Asia.
“It is fortunate the quake wasn’t closer to Kathmandu or there could have been many more victims”
Professor Andres Kappos
It’s been measured at 7.8 on the Richter scale, almost as strong as the 9.1 quake that triggered the Thailand tsunami in 2004 . It’s been confirmed as the country’s most deadly earthquake for 81 years.
Nepal and surrounding areas have continued to experience aftershocks since Saturday and people are camping outside, too afraid to go back into their homes; if they still have them.
Professor Andres Kappos, the Secretary General of the European Association of Earthquake Engineering, said that a 7.8 magnitude quake is the equivalent to more than 180 million tons of dynamite exploding.
The quake even caused avalanches on Mount Everest, which trapped 200 people. Reports are now suggesting that all the injured have been rescued and the dead evacuated.
International aid from India, China, the UK and the US has started arriving in Nepal but has run into issues at Kathmandu airport, due to people attempting to leave the country while flights of aid are trying to enter.
“We urge foreign countries to give us special relief materials and medical teams. We are really desperate for more foreign expertise to pull through this crisis.”
Leela Mani Paudel, Chief Secretary, Nepal Government
According to Professor Kappos, the reason for the amount of devastation in Nepal was partly due to a lack of appropriate building structure.
Social media giant Facebook has also introduced a personalised donation advert at the top of users’ news feeds to encourage them to send help to Nepal.