A devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake shook Nepal a few minute before noon local time on Saturday, April 25, killing hundreds and sending a ripple of aftershocks through the country and into India, China, and Bangladesh. The shaking caused buildings to crumble in the country’s capital of Kathmandu, including a historic 200-foot watchtower that was occupied by tourists when the quake struck. The earthquake also caused avalanches and shifting on Mount Everest, killing hikers on the mountain.
As of Sunday morning, the estimated death toll hovers around 2,500 victims, most of whom were located in Kathmandu. The Guardian is updating live reports with new figures as more information becomes available. Tremors reached across the subcontinent, reaching as far as Bangladesh, India and Tibet. There have been a half a dozen aftershocks, one reaching a magnitude of 6.6. With many trapped in the rubble and more aftershocks possible, the full toll of the earthquake may not be known for some time.
Among the victims was a top Google executive, who sustained a head injury during an avalanche on Mount Everest. Dan Fredinburg, head of privacy for Google X, was one of at least a dozen hikers who lost their lives on Everest in the aftermath of the earthquake.
The earthquake centered over two major tectonic plates—the northern Eurasia plate and the India plate—at a place where many geologists have worried a major earthquake was likely to strike soon. Most of the structural damage was centered in the historic part of the city, where temples and palaces crumbled.
Rescue and recovery efforts are ongoing.