Nepal Earthquake Survivor: 'We Huddled under a Beam and Prayed'

Carrie Dedrick | Monday, April 27, 2015

Nepal Earthquake Survivor: 'We Huddled under a Beam and Prayed'

Nepal’s 7.8-magnitude earthquake left over 3,800 dead and thousands homeless. One survivor, a journalist who was visiting relatives in Kathmandu when the earthquake struck, documented the events that occurred after natural disaster in an article published on

The journalist, Sunir Pandey, wrote that when the earthquake hit, he and his family “huddled under a concrete beam -- and prayed.” 

After the initial earthquake, Pandey traveled the 7.4 miles to his parents’ house to check in on more family members. He wrote that phone calls were not possible but texts went through as aftershocks continued to shake the region. 

“Everywhere, survivors gathered wherever they could find open space -- fields, private compounds, empty roadside lots,” he wrote. 

Thousands of homes collapsed from the intensity of the earthquake, as well as places of worship. 

“The Kasthamandap temple had caved in. Temples that sat on impressive staircase-style pyramids were now dust,” Pandey said. 

To accommodate those who lost homes, the military had set up camps for shelter. 

Pandey said, “Green military tents meant for two people were now packed with six and the army was trying hard to accommodate as many as possible.”

When the journalist made it to his parents’ house, he found the 30-year-old structure still standing. 

“Back home, my parents decided against going to the nearby Sifal Chaur football field where families were sleeping on plastic mattresses under rudimentary tents,” he wrote. 

“Instead, their tactic was to stay on the ground floor, be awakened by tremors, and then scamper to a corner of our garden that seemed relatively safe.”

He was safe, though he writes that he "did not sleep a wink."

To help with Nepal relief efforts, go here.

Publication date: April 27, 2015

Nepal Earthquake Survivor: 'We Huddled under a Beam and Prayed'