THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Watch here Nepal Earthquake Video. AP’s earlier story is below.
A powerful aftershock shook Nepal on Sunday, making buildings sway and sending panicked Kathmandu residents running into the streets a day after a massive earthquake left at least 1,900 people dead.
The cawing of crows mixed with terrified screams as the aftershock pummeled the capital city early Sunday afternoon. At magnitude 6.7, it was strong enough to feel like an another earthquake, and came as planeloads of supplies, doctors and relief workers from neighboring countries began arriving in this poor Himalayan nation.
“The aftershocks keep coming … so people don’t know what to expect,” said Sanjay Karki, Nepal country head for global aid agency Mercy Corps. “All the open spaces in Kathmandu are packed with people who are camping outdoors. When the aftershocks come you cannot imagine the fear. You can hear women and children crying.”
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7.9 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Nepal 150 Killed Dead 7.5 Bhaktapur Pokhara Magnitude 6.7 aftershock shakes Kathmandu, sending people yelling and running for open ground Kathmandu Delhi Indian, India Pakistan – 7.9 Devastating: Death Toll In Nepal 7.8 Magnitude Earthquake Rapidly Climbing! (Over 5 ,200 People Killed) Damage Magnitude-7.9 Quake Hits Nepal, Causing Big Damage, Injuries
Saturday’s magnitude 7.8 earthquake spread horror from Kathmandu to small villages and to the slopes of Mount Everest, triggering an avalanche that buried part of the base camp packed with foreign climbers preparing to make their summit attempts. At least 17 people died there and 61 were injured.
The earthquake centered outside Kathmandu, the capital, was the worst to hit the South Asian nation in over 80 years. It destroyed swaths of the oldest neighborhoods of Kathmandu, and was strong enough to be felt all across parts of India, Bangladesh, China’s region of Tibet and Pakistan. By Sunday morning, authorities said at least 1,970 people had died, all but 60 of them in Nepal. At least 721 of them died in Kathmandu alone, and the number of injured nationwide was upward of 5,000. With search and rescue efforts far from over, it was unclear how much the death toll would rise.
But outside of the oldest neighborhoods, many in Kathmandu were surprised by how few modern structures – the city is largely a collection of small, poorly constructed brick apartment buildings – collapsed in the quake. While aid workers cautioned that many buildings could have sustained serious structural damage, it was also clear that the death toll would have been far higher had more buildings caved in.
On a flight into Kathmandu on Sunday morning, an AP correspondent was unable to spot any collapsed buildings.
Aid workers also warned that the situation could be far worse near the epicenter. The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake was centered near Lamjung, about 80 kilometers (50 miles) northwest of Kathmandu, in the Gorkha district.
Roads to that area were blocked by landslides, hindering rescue teams, said chief district official Prakash Subedi. Teams were trekking through mountain trails to reach remote villages, and helicopters would also be deployed, he said by telephone.
The aid group World Vision said in a statement that remote mountain communities, including in Gorkha, were totally unprepared for the level of destruction caused by the earthquake.