Red Cross volunteers and staff remain on high alert following second major earthquake in Nepal

Published: 12 May 2015

12 May 2015, Kathmandu. Red Cross teams in Nepal are on high alert following today’s 7.3 magnitude earthquake that struck near the town of Namche Bazaar, at the base of Mount Everest.

Initial assessments by the Nepal Red Cross Society indicate that hundreds of homes have collapsed, many of which had already been damaged by the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck the country two weeks ago. Regions already struggling to cope with the effects of the earlier earthquake were hit hard.

Martin Faller, head of operations for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in Asia Pacific, said the combination of rain and aftershocks were making the task of responding to the needs of communities a challenge. “Today’s earthquake has dealt a double blow to many of the same people who were hit by the 25 April quake. More people will now be in need of emergency shelter but they will also need support dealing with the trauma they have experienced,” he said. “People are very scared.”

The Norwegian Red Cross emergency hospital based in the town of Chautara in Sindhupalchok district, has treated a steady stream of injured people through the day and the support team working at the hospital are helping to set up a camp outside the hospital to provide additional shelter.

Maude Froberg, a representative for the IFRC, was en route to the town of Tatopani close to the Tibetan border when landslides forced the convoy back.

“We were high up in the mountains. It was quite terrifying as there were about ten aftershocks and we felt that there could be a landslide at any moment,” she said. “Over the course of the afternoon we saw a lot of vehicles heading out of Tatopani towards Kathmandu.”

In Tatopani itself, the tented emergency hospital established by the Canadian Red Cross continued to provide basic health care while treating injuries caused during today’s earthquake.

Reports also indicate that there has been more damage to areas in the Kathmandu Valley. The Nepal Red Cross Society has mobilized emergency first aid teams in the Valley and team members are providing services to the injured including teams dispatched to Lalitpur and Bhaktapur where ambulances have been mobilized to transport the injured to hospitals.

Find more at: ifrc.org/nepal-earthquake

For further information or to setup interviews, please contact:

In Kathmandu

Nichola Jones, IFRC communications delegate

Tel: +977 9803914943 +447793167032 / Twitter @nicjones81

 

Maude Froberg, IFRC regional communications manager

Tel: +918130918887/98  maude.froberg@ifrc.org  Twitter: @maudefroberg

 

Patrick Fuller, IFRC Asia Pacific communications manager

Tel: +977 980391 +60122308451 / Patrick.fuller@ifrc.org Twitter: @pat_fuller and @IFRCAsiapacific

 

 

In Kuala Lumpur

Reeni Amin Chua, IFRC communications senior officer

Tel: +41797086273 / reeni.aminchua@ifrc.org

 

In Geneva

Benoit Carpentier, IFRC team leader, public communications

Tel: +41792132413  Email: benoit.carpentier@ifrc.org Twitter: @BenoistC

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world’s largest volunteer-based humanitarian network, reaching 150 mil­lion people each year through its 189 member National Societies. Together, the IFRC acts before, during and after disasters and health emergencies to meet the needs and improve the lives of vulnerable people. It does so with impartiality as to nationality, race, gender, religious beliefs, class and political opinions. For more information, please visit www.ifrc.org. You can also connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.

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