On Sunday an avalanche was triggered on Mount Everest by the huge earthquake in Nepal which had the magnitude 7.8. 17 people died, 60 climber were injured and hundreds others are still stranded. This is considered the deadliest disaster Mount Everest has ever seen. The incident came a year after 16 guides were killed in another avalanche.
At the base camp marine biologist George Foulsham from Singapore talked about how he ran and how the snow flattened him. Foulsham said that he was not able to breathe and he thought he was dead until he finally stood up and realized that he was untouched.
Helicopters carried 22 of the most severely injured climbers from the Indian Air Force to the nearest medical facility, at the Pheriche village. The bad weather made the rescue and relief operations difficult. After the weather conditions improved Journalist Ammu Kannampilly reported that six helicopters landed at the base camp on Sunday. Kannampilly wrote that half a dozen people were stretchered out while the helicopters were landing on Sunday morning.
According to officials from the Nepal Mountaineering Association there were over 100 climbers at the camps 1 and 2, which are above the base camp. They are reported to be safe, but officials said it would take some time before they could be evacuated. Ang Tshering Sherpa, the president of the association, said that when the avalanche struck at around lunchtime there were more than 800 people at different places. Most of them came to Nepal for the annual climbing season. But the season was cancelled last year after the death of 16 sherpa guides.
Tulsi Gautam, a spokesman for Nepal’s tourism department, reported that 17 people are dead and 61 are injured, but the number could further increase. Gautam also explained that those who were not able to walk on their own to Pheriche were airlifted.
Google executive, Dan Fredinburg, was reported to be among the dead climbers. According to officials from the Tourism Ministry 400 people among the 1.000 climbers were foreigners. The earthquake which triggered the avalanche affected both China and India. The avalanche began on the 7.000-meter-high Mount Kumori, which is just a few miles away from Everest. The death toll in China and India was over 2.000. According to the Home Ministry 1.000 people were killed in Kathmandu valley alone.