KATHMANDU – Rescue teams have recovered 13 bodies out of the 18 who died on Mount Everest in avalanches following the earthquake that shook Nepal on Saturday, an official said on Tuesday.
Among the 13 fatalities whose bodies were recovered, nine were Nepalese, two from the United States, one was Australian and one from China.
According to the latest data from Nepal’s National Emergency Operation Center, 18 people lost their lives on the world’s highest mountain, although Nepali authorities had initially put the number at 22, with at least 61 injured.
The remains of the nine Nepalese victims were given to their families, the center reported on its official Twitter account.
The bodies of the U.S. and the Chinese nationals were found in Lukla, a town near Mount Everest, and will be transferred to Kathmandu, where the bodies of the other U.S. mountaineer and the Australian were also sent.
The center also confirmed via Twitter that there were 61 injured climbers at the Everest base camp, of which 53 were evacuated to Kathmandu and the 8 others to Lukla.
Of the 150 people who were at camps 1 and 2 during the earthquake on Saturday, 120 were routed on foot to Pangboche, a town at an altitude of almost 4,000 meters (13,123 feet), while the remaining 20 were brought there by helicopter, according to the center.
Rescue operations to recover the remaining five bodies continue despite poor weather conditions, and six helicopters are located at various points near Everest.
The last official death toll from the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that devastated Nepal on Saturday was 4,349 lives, while 8,517 people were injured.
The earthquake is being called the worst in Nepal’s recent history and one of the most powerful in the region, since an earthquake in 2005 in Kashmir that killed more than 84,000 people.