Safety fears after Kathmandu quake
Posted by Katrina and Martin Butterworth at 13:59 on 23rd September 2011
From the emails we've received this week it seems some of you have heard about the earthquake last Sunday evening.
It notably caused a wall at the British Embassy to fall down killing three passers by, and incidentally destroyed hundreds of houses and lives elsewhere.
At the time of the earthquake we were all together at a friend’s apartment, so didn't have to test the lack of preparedness at our own flat.
Our friends live on the ground floor with an easy exit route so we went out into their compound and experienced the shaking in relative safety.
It did make us think a bit about what we'd do in our own flat which is on the first floor with narrow stairs down to a small outside area overlooked by high buildings of dubious quality. Ah well, at least we've thought about it.
Nepalis generally have been in a great state of excitement. Everyone talks about how frightened they were and most seem to have run out into the street, which is often not the best thing to do.
The phone networks were either dead or totally jammed for some time after as people tried to contact their family and friends.
It was the subject of the regular Monday morning meeting at work and the message at church on Wednesday. This time it seems to have been mainly old, pre-cement, buildings that have fallen down.
But here in Kathmandu we have a lot of cheaply made newer buildings and not much open space. We've decided our safest option at home is to head for the centre of the flat which looks the strongest bit.