Analysis: Facts you need to know about quakes in Nepal

Nepal has been hit by five earthquakes in 81 years, claiming the lives of 13,093 people.

People clear rubble in Kathmandu’s Durbar Square, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was severely damaged by an earthquake on 25 April, 2015. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - On 24 April 2015 a 7.9 magnitude earthquake hit near the capital of Kathmandu in Nepal flattening homes, buildings and temples then causing widespread damage across the region.

The 7.9 magnitude quake killed more than 2,300 people including at least 17 Mount Everest climbers.

Nepal is sandwiched between India and China. The mountainous north of Nepal has eight of the world's ten tallest mountains, including the highest point on Earth, Mount Everest.

The major earthquake unleashed an avalanche on Mount Everest, killing 17 people and raising fears for other climbers on the world's highest peak.


This quake has been Nepal's biggest and worst earthquake in 81 years.

• In 1934, an 8.1 magnitude quake hit the mountainous country claiming the lives of more than 10,000 people.The epicentre for this event was located in eastern Nepal about 10km south of Mount Everest.

• In 1980 a 6.5 magnitude earthquake hit the region killing 65 people and destroying 40,000 homes.

• Eight years later, in 1988, a 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck. A total of 722 were killed and 12,000 were left injured.

• In 2011 a 6.9 magnitude earthquake killed six people.

• 2015: 7.9 magnitude quake hit near the capital of Kathmandu killing thousands and causing massive damage.

Meanwhile, scientists are warning that there will be more weeks and even months of strong aftershocks following quake.

Experts warn that there are greater risks ahead of landslides and avalanches.

Geophysist Randy Balwin said, "The aftershock sequence lasts for quite a while. We can look at these quakes and see the kind of aftershocks that they produced and that's what we use as a go by."


According to the US Geological Survey (USGS) the mountainous area is a hotspot for earthquakes because of massive forces as a result of the Indian Plate pushing up against the Eurasian Plate.

The shifting tectonic plates make the mountainous region susceptible to massive earthquakes and tremors.

The net effect of plate-tectonics forces acting on this geologically complicated region is to squeeze parts of Asia eastward toward the Pacific Ocean.

Some of the world's most destructive earthquakes in history are related to continuing tectonic processes that began some 50 million years ago when the Indian and Eurasian continents first met.

WATCH: Historic Nepal tower collapses.