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May 2015 Nepal earthquake

Coordinates: 27°50′13″N 86°04′37″E / 27.837°N 86.077°E / 27.837; 86.077
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May 2015 Nepal earthquake
May 2015 Nepal earthquake is located in Nepal
May 2015 Nepal earthquake
UTC time2015-05-12 07:05:19
ISC event610588278
Local date12 May 2015; 9 years ago (2015-05-12)
Local time12:50:19 NST
Magnitude7.3 Mw[1]
Depth18.5 km (11.5 mi)
Epicenter27°50′13″N 86°04′37″E / 27.837°N 86.077°E / 27.837; 86.077[1]
FaultMain Himalayan Thrust
Max. intensityMMI VII (Very strong)[1]
Aftershocks5.7 Mw on 2015-05-16 11:34:10 (UTC)[2][3]
Casualties218 dead
3,500+ injured
Aftershocks of 2015 Nepal earthquake

A major earthquake occurred in Nepal on 12 May 2015 at 12:50 pm local time (07:05 UTC) with a moment magnitude of 7.3, 18 kilometres (11 mi) southeast of Kodari. The epicenter was on the border of Dolakha and Sindhupalchowk, two districts of Nepal. This earthquake occurred on the same fault as the larger magnitude 7.8 earthquake of 25 April, but further east than the original quake.[1] As such, it is considered to be an aftershock of the April quake.[1] It struck at a depth of 18.5 km (11.5 mi). Shaking was felt in northern parts of India including Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.[6] Tremors were felt as far as about 2,400 km away from the epicenter in Chennai.[7][8]

Minutes later, another 6.3-magnitude earthquake hit Nepal with its epicenter in Ramechhap, east of Kathmandu. The earthquake was felt in Bangladesh, China and many other states in India.[9] The impact of these tremors was felt even 1,000 kilometres away in the Indian capital New Delhi, where buildings shook and office workers evacuated.[10]

Damage and casualties[edit]

USGS ShakeMap

The aftershock caused mass panic as many people were living in the open air after the 25 April quake.[11] "For the first seconds, it was complete silence. By the fifth second, everybody started to scream", said an eyewitness. "It was really, really intense. Even when the shaking stopped, people were still screaming".[12] The tremor caused fresh landslides, and destroyed some buildings which survived the first quake.[12]

In Nepal, at least 153 people were killed by the earthquake and more than 3,200 people were injured, primarily in mountain regions of the northeast.[13][14] As of 15 May, 1,700 people were still receiving treatment for their injuries.[14] Thirty-two of the nation's seventy-five districts were affected by the quake. In Kathmandu, the streets were quickly filled as people fled buildings. Within hours of the quake, tents began to fill open areas of the city as residents were afraid to go back inside.[12] The district of Sindhupalchowk, which was also hit hard in the original quake, was among the worst-affected areas. Between the two quakes, 95% of the areas houses were destroyed.[14] Areas around Mount Everest also saw fresh damage.[12]

Casualties by country
Country Deaths Injuries Ref.
   Nepal 153 3,275 [15]
 India 62 ~200 [15]
 Bangladesh 2 ~150 [15]
 China 1 3 [15]
Total 218 3,500+

In India, Delhi Metro service was briefly interrupted as people fled their homes and places of employment.[11] At least 17 people were killed by the quake in India. Sixteen of the deaths occurred in Bihar and one in Uttar Pradesh. One woman in the Tibet region of China was killed when falling rocks hit her car.[12]

Nepalese reacting to the quake

A US military helicopter, UH-1 Huey, carrying six US Marines and two Nepalese soldiers, went missing when on a disaster relief operation in central Nepal.[16][17] On 14 May the wreckage was found in burned condition in the Gorthali area.[18] Three bodies were recovered from the crash site.[14] On 16 May, when a total of eight bodies were recovered, the Pentagon spokesman Steve Warren said that although the cause of the crash was not yet known, a nearby Indian helicopter had heard radio chatter about a possible fuel problem.[19]

Rescue and relief[edit]

The Nepal Army continued its Operation Sankat Mochan to aid the affected population along with the Indian Army and delivered several tons of relief materials, and rescued stranded people.[20]

According to geophysicist Amy Vaughan, the 12 May quake is likely a sign that more aftershocks are on the way. "Generally, in the days and weeks and months [seismic activity] tapers off", she said. "But ... this is going to temporarily increase [the aftershocks]".[12]

See also[edit]

Dust clouds over villages 12 May 2015


  1. ^ a b c d e f "M7.3 - 18km SE of Kodari, Nepal". USGS Earthquake Hazards Program.
  2. ^ "M5.7 - 24km N of Ramechhap, Nepal". usgs.gov. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  3. ^ "Mild tremors in Bihar as 5.7 magnitude earthquake hits Nepal". The Indian Express. 16 May 2015. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  4. ^ a b c "Fresh earthquake kills scores in Nepal and India". Yahoo News. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
  5. ^ Greg Botelho and Jethro Mullen, CNN (12 May 2015). "Another Nepal earthquake: Deaths in 3 nations - CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved 13 May 2015. {{cite web}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  6. ^ "7.3 Magnitude Earthquake hits North India including Bihar". news.biharprabha.com. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  7. ^ "Mild tremors in Chennai too". The Hindu. 12 May 2015.
  8. ^ "Ttremors felt in Chennai". Times of India. 12 May 2015.
  9. ^ "Nepal earthquake, magnitude 7.3, strikes near Everest". BBC News. 12 May 2015.
  10. ^ "Nepal Earthquake on 12 May 2015: Magnitude, Epicenter, Damages and Relief Operations". news.biharprabha.com. Ventuno/AFP. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  11. ^ a b "LIVE: 42 dead, over 1000 injured in Nepal earthquake; toll in India rises to 17". The Indian Express. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 12 May 2015.
  12. ^ a b c d e f Greg Botelho; Jethro Mullen (13 May 2015). "Dozens dead after another major earthquake centered in Nepal". CNN. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
  13. ^ Manesh Shrestha (14 May 2015). "Death toll from this week's Nepal earthquake rises above 125". CNN. Retrieved 14 May 2015.
  14. ^ a b c d Manesh Shrestha; Jethro Mullen; Laura Smith-Spark (15 May 2015). "Nepal's latest earthquake: Death toll climbs above 100". CNN. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
  15. ^ a b c d "Deadly Nepal Gorkha/Kodari earthquakes – 771,000 students affected – 8,871 people dead & list of names". 25 April 2015. Archived from the original on 24 December 2018. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  16. ^ Matthew Weaver (12 May 2015). "Nepal earthquake: US helicopter reported missing as dozens reported dead – live". the Guardian. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
  17. ^ "Nepal earthquake: US Marine Corps helicopter may have gone down in a river". ABC News. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
  18. ^ "Minister: 3 bodies found with wreckage of missing U.S. helicopter in Nepal". CNN. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
  19. ^ "Nepal earthquake: Eight bodies recovered at US helicopter crash site". BBC News. 16 May 2015. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  20. ^ "Operation Maitri by Indian Army continues after 12 May Earthquake". news.biharprabha.com. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 12 May 2015.

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