Teenager Pema Lama was pulled out alive from under a collapsed Hilton Hotel on Thursday, five days after an earthquake hit the country and left him trapped.
Lama was rescued by Nepal’s Armed Police Force and carried on a stretcher and in a neck brace to a waiting ambulance. The teenager had been trapped under rubble, but was saved from being crushed by his motorcycle, a rescue team official said.
Another U.S. rescue official said he was trapped by a piece of corrugated roof material and had space to move. The Nepalese Armed Police Force cut through metal objects in order to get close to teen.
Pema Lama was conscious, held the hand of one of his rescuers and looked towards a large group of photographers and television news crews as he was brought to safety, a Reuters photographer at the scene said.
A large crowd gathered and cheered when Lama was brought out. Members of the security forces hoisted the rescuer, Laxman Basnet, onto their shoulders to more cheers.
Lama’s discovery came as a glimpse of hope in a country that has faced its worst earthquake in more than 80 years. The teenager was recovering hours later in a makeshift camp run by aid workers from Israel.
A senior doctor, treating Lama at the Israeli field hospital said he was amazed at the health and well-being of his patient.
Officials said the chances of finding more survivors were fading as the death toll climbed above 5,500. According to the United Nations, 600,000 houses have been destroyed or damaged.
An official from Nepal’s home ministry said the number of confirmed deaths from the earthquake had risen to 5,582 by Thursday afternoon, and almost 11,200 were injured.
Prime Minister Sushil Koirala told Reuters earlier this week the death toll from the quake could reach 10,000, with information on casualties and damage from far-flung villages and towns yet to come in.
That would surpass the 8,500 who died in a 1934 earthquake, the last disaster on this scale to hit the nation of 28 million people sandwiched between India and China.
China building settlements for displaced Tibet residents
The devastating earthquake in Nepal on Saturday seriously shook neighboring China’s Tibet Autonomous Region. The evacuation of thousands of people who were trapped in a Tibetan town on the Nepal border began Wednesday after its entry highway was cleared of obstruction. CCTV’s Si Nan filed this report.
China building settlements for displaced Tibet residentsThe devastating earthquake in Nepal on Saturday seriously shook neighboring China's Tibet Autonomous Region. The evacuation of thousands of people who were trapped in a Tibetan town on the Nepal border began Wednesday after its entry highway was cleared of obstruction. CCTV's Si Nan filed this report.
Shanghai medical team joins rescue efforts
A medical team from Shanghai arrived in Nepal Thursday afternoon. They will work in quake-hit areas for 10 days, providing both medical and psychological support. Song Wenjing talked to some of the team members before departure.