Nepal Death Toll Expected To Pass 10,000

As the smoke clears and rescuers reach out to distant villages the death toll is expected to rise considerably in Nepal, has learned.

Nepal’s prime minister said Tuesday the death toll from the catastrophic earthquake that rocked the country Saturday will likely reach 10,000. The United Nations estimated 8 million people have been affected.

Prime Minister Sushil Koirala made the statement to Reuters as he appealed for tents and medicine. He also ordered rescue efforts to be stepped up in case survivors were still trapped. International aid has already begun flowing into the country.

The death toll from the 7.8 magnitude quake has soared past 4,600. Hundreds of thousands of people are sleeping outdoors and living in the open out of fear of being inside unstable buildings amid aftershocks. Compounding problems were heavy rains on Tuesday in the capital of Kathmandu. The downpour forced people to find shelter wherever they could.

Gautam Rimal, an official in rural Nepal, said 250 additional people are believed missing following a mudslide and avalanche in the isolated village of Ghodatabela, not far from the center of the quake.

The quake killed at least 61 people in India, and 25 were reported dead in Tibet as tremors from the quake rippled across the region.