Apr 28, 2015 3:17 PM

NH1 Radio Exclusive: Manchester resident in Nepal details scene during earthquake


Theresa Rourk moved to Kathmandu, Nepal 10 months ago to take a job at a tech company. She was in her office on the fourth floor Saturday when the worst earthquake in 80 years struck the region.

NH1 News was finally able to contact her by phone after several dropped calls Tuesday. Rourk says that when the quake started shaking the building she tried to get down the hallway but couldn't. "The stairwell is a long hallway where everything was crashing in so I couldn't get to the stairwell," she says. She fell over twice trying. "So I went to the part of the hallway that did not have any ceiling or overhang above it."

She compared being stuck for a full minute on the fourth floor during a major earthquake to being on a boat during a storm.

Once the shaking stopped she ran down the stairs to safer ground. She says, she ran home to check on her dog and found one of the walls facing the alley to her house had collapsed.

She said after Sunday's 6.7 magnitude aftershock most Nepalese were too scared to go back into their homes, if they still had a home.

"Every open area across the city is a tent city," Rourk says. "People are not sleeping in their homes; everybody is sleeping outside. I think the second earthquake, the really bad earthquake on Sunday scared everybody. Including myself."

Rourk is currently staying at the U.S. Embassy and says they are encouraged to stay put for now. She said relief efforts are finally mobilizing in Kathmandu so she is optimistic the situation will start to improve over the next several days. She says right now, most people in Kathmandu don't have clean water.

Rourk says if you want to help there are several international organizations that are aiding the relief effort like the Red Cross, UNICEF, and USAID. And if you are looking for a loved one in Nepal and are unable to contact them, Rourk recommends contacting your state department and members of congress.

Listen to the full interview with Theresa Rourk.

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