At 11.56am on April 25th, 2015 the Nepal earthquake struck, killing 9,000 people and injuring a further 23,000. One mllion homes were destroyed. The earthquake triggered an avalanche on Mount Everest, which took the lives of 22 climbers and support staff.
Alex Staniforth with Alan Hinkes
In seconds the world changed. This is what happened in Alex’s own words:
“Suddenly, I heard a stupendous crack and roar from the West Shoulder of Everest on my left that filled the valley and sickened my stomach. There was nowhere to run as a huge deafening rumble accelerated from above. The fog was so thick I could barely see thirty metres ahead. But with my head down the roar closed in with a huge WHACK.
Tonnes of snow went through me in what was a separate avalanche to the one that hit Base Camp. It felt like someone had unleashed a snow cannon and wind tunnel from both directions.
For a split second I thought I was dead. I thought I would be buried for maybe 20 seconds but what felt like minutes, I thought about my family and disbelief that the end was here already. But relief set in as I could see again. “
Rob Dalton roaming with the Ronin rig
Gurkha officer Govinda Rana and guide/storyboard artist George Manley
Camera operator & mountain goat Jordi Vidal Oliveras
A tribute to the Nepalese people on the summit
“Nepal is one of the most beautiful countries in the world, and it has deep and long-established links to the United Kingdom. The Himalayas, Everest and the continuing story of the sacrifice and courage of the Gurkhas hides a deeper truth about the fragility of life for many Nepalese people.
Some 7 million to 8 million people out of Nepal’s population of 19 million live in absolute poverty. Malnutrition rates in Nepal are among the highest in the world. More than 2 million people in Nepal do not have access to a safe water supply, and more than half the population do not have access to a proper toilet.
Many families see their menfolk forced to migrate for some of each year—usually, but not always, to India—to earn a living for their families as incomes are simply too low in Nepal.”
(EXTRACT FROM UK PARLIAMENTARY DEBATE, HANSARD, APRIL 25, 2016)
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