Over 900 dead, buildings toppled as Nepal hit by 7.9 magnitude earthquake

Hundreds of people have been killed after a magnitude 7.9 earthquake struck Nepal causing extensive damage in the capital Kathmandu. At least 900 have been confirmed dead across the country following the strongest quake to hit Nepal in 80 years, according government officials. The quake toppled Kathmandu’s iconic nine-storey Dharahara tower, with rescuers left scrambling to reach some 50 people reported to have been trapped under the rubble. Earlier police removed around a dozen bodies from the 19th Century UNESCO-recognised monument, also known as the Bhimsen Tower. Tremors were also felt in neighbouring India, with 20 people, including a 15-year-old girl, reported to have been killed.

It was a pretty massive earthquake here, the strongest I’ve ever felt in my life.

Photojournalist Nayantara, who is in Pokhara, speaking to Sky News

Another child died when a statue fell in a park outside Kathmandu. The quake is also understood to have killed 10 people when it triggered a huge avalanche on Mount Everest, damaging Everest base camp. The quake struck 80km (50 miles) east of the central city of Pokhara, close to the capital, the U.S. Geological Survey said. In Kathmandu dozens of people with injuries are being brought to the city’s main hospital, with many forced to wait outside on the street for treatment. A number of centuries-old temples have been destroyed and there are unconfirmed reports that the densely-populated city’s main airport has closed, according to Sky News.

Everest base camp huge earthquake then huge avalanche from pumori. Running for life from my tent. Unhurt. Many many people up the mountain.

Mountaineer Alex Gavan tweeted from Mount Pumori, near Mount Everest