Taiwanese rescue, medical team departs for quake-hit Nepal
Dozens of Taiwanese rescuers, medical staff and charity group members departed for Nepal on Tuesday afternoon to help the Himalayan country recover from a magnitude-7.8 earthquake last weekend that has left thousands dead.
The 37-member team is comprised of people from the International Headquarters Search and Rescue (SAR), Taiwan, a non-governmental, volunteer-based search and rescue organization, and two charities, the Red Cross Society of the Republic of China and the Buddha’s Light International Association.
It also includes doctors and nurses from Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital.
The team is bringing with it about five tons of relief supplies consisting of blankets, tents, dried foods and medical supplies, a member of the Buddha’s Light International Association said.
Departing from Taiwan, the team will make a transit stop in Hong Kong and is scheduled to arrive in Nepal at around 11 p.m. It will be divided into two teams shortly after it lands, the association member said.
Lu Cheng-tsung at a send-off ceremony for the rescue and medical team.
The 7.8 magnitude quake hit Nepal on Saturday, destroying buildings in the capital of Kathmandu and severely affecting rural areas across the region. The death toll has climbed to 4,310, foreign media reported.
The latest tally compiled by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs showed that 193 Taiwanese in Nepal at the time of the earthquake have been confirmed safe and 18 remain unaccounted for. Some of them have returned to Taiwan and others are expected to return later Tuesday.
(Right) Firefighters work at an apartment building where a man is said to be preparing to ignite liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), yesterday. The man living in an apartment near the Shida Night Market faced off with firefighters while allegedly attempting to ignite LPG on his balcony on the fourth floor. The firefighters shot water at the building, creating a window of opportunity for the police to successfully break in and apprehend the man.
Taiwan’s emergency search and rescue team members stand for inspection before heading to Nepal to assist with the earthquake relief effort at the Taoyuan International Airport in Taoyuan, Taiwan, Tuesday, April 28. Saturday’s magnitude 7.8 earthquake spread horror from Kathmandu to small villages and to the slopes of Mount Everest, triggering an avalanche that buried part of the base camp packed with foreign climbers preparing to make their summit attempts.