Nepal’s government says more than 6,600 people are known to have died in last week’s earthquake and hopes have faded for finding anyone still alive.
The 7.8-magnitude quake reduced much of Kathmandu to rubble and triggered a deadly avalanche on Mount Everest when it erupted at around midday last Saturday.
While teams of rescuers from more than 20 countries have been using sniffer dogs and heat-seeking equipment to find survivors in the rubble, no one has been pulled alive since Thursday evening.
As hopes of detecting more signs of life among the ruins have all but disappeared, the focus is shifting to reaching survivors in far-flung areas who have yet to receive relief supplies.
Local aid workers have told Sky News that in some regions of Nepal 80-100% of the homes have been destroyed. Hundreds of thousands of people are now homeless and are likely to spend months living in makeshift shelters.
Dr Komal Thapa, who has been handing out supplies, says the scale of the destruction is overwhelming.
“It is almost a week and they are getting maximum help from the NGOs and local people and helping each other.
“The government is probably planning on doing a great job but they’ve got all this bureaucratic stuff and they’ve not been able to do anything out here at the moment.”
We visited the village of Shivghat in Sindhupalchowk District – the devastation was nearly total. Most of the houses were completely destroyed and those still standing were badly damaged and unstable. Like most of the inhabitants, Ram Bahadur was digging in the broken rubble that once used to be his home.
All of his possessions and his savings are buried under tons of debris. He tells me about his fears for the future: “I do not know what I am going to do or how my family will get enough food.
“I just don’t know what will happen to us,” he said.
Some aid is starting to trickle through, but the villagers say they feel they have been forgotten by the outside world. The Thai government has set up a medical tent near the village. We watched as people queued up for help.
But the authorities say there are still thousands of other survivors trapped in the small mountain villages and they too are in urgent need of assistance.
Source: Sky News