NEPAL QUAKE: Key Facts About the Earthquake

Overwhelmed doctors make split-second life or death decisions, as the death toll in Nepal crosses, 6,200. Continue reading →

This blog features breaking news about the recent earthquake in Nepal. Check back for updates as coverage of the rescue efforts continues. To find out how you can help the victims, scroll to the bottom of the story for links to rescue groups.

UPDATED 5:30 p.m. Friday - A 7.8-magnitude quake struck Nepal on Saturday April 25, 2015, flattening large parts of the capital Kathmandu and causing devastation across the impoverished Himalayan nation.

Here are the key facts about Nepal's worst natural disaster in 80 years.

6,204 people are known to have died in Nepal alone.

More than 14,000 have been injured across the country.

18 climbers died at Mount Everest base camp when the quake sparked an avalanche.

75 people were killed in India.

The United Nations estimates that 8 million people have been affected.

2.8 million Nepalese were displaced, according to the world body.

More than 3.5 million people are estimated to be in need of food assistance, the UN said.

And UNICEF estimates that 1.7 million children live in the worst-hit areas.

The Nepal Red Cross Society said it had almost exhausted its relief stocks which were sufficient for 19,000 families.

Nepal's government said 130,033 houses had been destroyed, according to the UN.

UPDATED 11:30 a.m. Friday - At Nepal‘s crowded National Trauma Center, overwhelmed doctors make split-second life or death decisions, arranging earthquake victims into order of priority and trying where possible to avoid amputations.

The center, attached to the Nepalese capital's Bir Hospital, is swarming with overworked medics, aid officials and volunteers following Saturday's monster 7.8-magnitude quake that has killed more than 6,200 people.

In the immediate hours after the disaster, some 2,000 people seeking treatment descended on the centre, which has only 150 beds.

"We have faced logistical problems of space and personnel," said the centre's coordinator Thapa Buland.

"We've opened up the halls, and some injured have been sleeping on mattresses on the floor and even outside. The situation has improved a little but now we're facing an influx of casualties arriving from the mountains and districts far from the capital," the doctor added.

Aftershocks and a rugged, mountainous terrain meant it was a couple of days before wounded survivors from remote villages could be airlifted to safety.

Pushpak Kumar Newar of non-governmental organization Handicap International said: "When districts are evacuated and helicopters turn up, there can be 30 victims all arriving at once."

HOW YOU CAN HELP The site Charity Navigator lists seven vetted relief groups that are assisting in aid and recovery efforts. These agencies will be providing food, shelter, medicine, clothing and hygiene items. All received a 3 or 4-star rating from Charity Navigator:

AmeriCares CARE Catholic Relief Services Direct Relief GlobalGiving Save the Children Seva Foundation

In Kathmandu, volunteers pick up entire bricks from the collapsed temples in order to build new one.

A massive earthquake killed more than 3,700 people Saturday as it tore through large parts of Nepal, toppling office blocks and towers in Kathmandu and triggering a deadly avalanche at Everest base camp. Photo: Members of the China International Search and Rescue Team arrive at Tribhuwan International Airport in Kathmandu, Nepal, on April 26.

Officials said the quake was the Himalayan nation's worst disaster in more than 80 years. But the final toll from the 7.8 magnitude quake could be much higher, and dozens more people were reported killed in neighboring India and China. Above, a temple lies in ruins at the Durbar Square in Patan, Nepal.

Tibetan kids eat breakfast supplied by rescue teams in Jilung County of Xigaze City, southwest of Tibet on Sunday.

Photo: Indian bystanders int he city of Siliguri look at a collapsed house following the Nepal earthquake.

Emergency workers fanned out across the Himalayan nation to rescue those trapped under collapsed homes, buildings and other debris. Offers of help poured in from governments around the world, with the United States and the European Union announcing they were sending in disaster response teams. "Deaths have been reported from all regions except the far west. All our security personnel have been deployed to rescue and assist those in need," Bam told AFP. The Red Cross (IFRC) said it was concerned about the fate of rural villages close to the epicenter of the quake northwest of the capital Kathmandu. Photo: Rescuers recover injured from rubble in Nepal's devastated capital city, Kathmandu.

"Roads have been damaged or blocked by landslides and communication lines are down preventing us from reaching local Red Cross branches to get accurate information," said IFRC Asia/Pacific director Jagan Chapagain in a statement. Officials said 10 people were killed when an avalanche buried parts of Mount Everest's base camp in Nepal where hundreds of mountaineers have gathered at the start of the annual climbing season. "We don't have the details yet, but 10 have been reported dead so far, including foreign climbers," Gyanendra Kumar Shrestha, an official in Nepal's tourism department, told AFP. "We are trying to assess how many are injured. There might be over 1,000 people there right now, including foreign climbers and Nepalese supporting staff." Photo: Many neighboring countries felt the earthquake's impact, including India.

AFP Nepal bureau chief Ammu Kannampilly, on an assignment to Everest together with a colleague, was among those caught up in the chaos. "We are both ok... snowing here so no choppers coming," she said in an SMS on an approach to base camp. "I hurt my hand - got it bandaged and told to keep it upright to stop the bleeding." Experienced mountaineers said panic erupted at base camp which had been "severely damaged", while one described the avalanche as "huge". Photo: People work to clear up earthquake damage in Siliguri, India.

"Huge disaster. Helped searched and rescued victims through huge debris area. Many dead. Much more badly injured. More to die if not heli asap," tweeted Romanian climber Alex Gavan from base camp. Kathmandu was severely damaged, and the historic nine-storey Dharahara tower, a major tourist attraction, was among buildings brought down. At least a dozen bodies were taken away from the ruins of the 19th-century tower, according to an AFP photographer who saw similar scenes of multiple casualties throughout the city. "It was difficult to breathe, but I slowly moved the debris. Someone then pulled me out. I don't know where my friends are," Dharmu Subedi, 36, who was standing outside the tower when it collapsed, said from a hospital bed. Photo: A road blocked by a landslide in Gyirong County of Xigaze Prefecture, southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region in the wake of the massive Nepal quake.

At least 42 people were known to have died in India, including 30 in the eastern state of Bihar, while buildings in the capital New Delhi had to be evacuated. The United States Geological Survey said the shallow quake struck 77 kilometers (48 miles) northwest of Kathmandu at 0611 GMT, with walls crumbling and families racing outside their homes. The quake tore through the middle of highways in the capital and also caused damage to the country's only international airport which was briefly closed. Kari Cuelenaere, an official at the Dutch embassy, said the impact had swept the water out of a swimming pool at a Kathmandu hotel where Dutch national day was being celebrated. "It was horrible, all of a sudden all the water came up out of the pool and drenched everyone, the children started screaming," Cuelenaere told AFP. "Some parts of the city fell down, there was dust rising... There were many (rescue) helicopters." Photos: Pedestrians walk past collapsed buildings in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Aftershock tremors could be felt more than two hours after the initial quake. USGS initially measured the quake at 7.5 magnitude and later adjusted it to 7.8, with a depth of 15 kilometers. Nepal and the rest of the Himalayas are particularly prone to earthquakes because of the collision of the Indian and Eurasia plates. The thrust of the India plate beneath Eurasia generates a large amount of seismic activity, the USGS says on its website. Photo: Pedestrians walk past collapsed buildings in Kathmandu, Nepal.

A spokesman for Nepal's home ministry said the government had released around $500 million as emergency funds for rescue operations. India dispatched two military transport planes to help with the rescue and relief efforts and there were similar offers from around the region, including Sri Lanka and Pakistan. The US Agency for International Development (USAID) said a disaster response was being flown to Nepal and that the Obama administration had authorized an initial $1 million "to address immediate needs." In Europe, Britain, Germany, Norway and Spain also pledged support and assistance. Photo: People gather around a collapsed building after an earthquake in Durbar square in Kathmandu, capital of Nepal.

Chinese President Xi Jinping sent a message of condolences to his Nepalese counterpart Ram Baran Yadav and offered to provide assistance. China's official Xinhua news agency said that 13 people, including an 83-year-old woman, were killed in the Tibet region. The area has a history of earthquakes, with a 6.8 magnitude quake that hit eastern Nepal in August 1988 killing 721 people. A magnitude 8.1 quake killed 10,700 people in Nepal and eastern India in 1934. Photo: A collapsed building is seen after an earthquake in Durbar square in Kathmandu, capital of Nepal.

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