The devastating earthquake that struck Nepal in April killing almost 9,000 was so powerful it also moved the world’s highest peak, Mount Everest, according to Chinese authorities.
Researchers in China say the earthquake moved Mount Everest about three centimetres southwest according to a survey by the National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation of China, state media reported.
The quake which struck April 25, left more than 8,700 people dead, while displacing hundreds of thousands more and reduced ancient buildings to rubble. According to the report, the quake did not affect the height of the 8,848-metre mountain.
China’s National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation have been monitoring the peak since 2005 by satellite and found that over the last decade it had been moving northeast at a speed of four centimetres a year, and had grown by 0.3 centimetres annually, state media reported.
The earthquake was strong enough to reverse the direction of the mountain.
The 7.8-magnitude earthquake set off an avalanche that buried a camp used by climbers on their way to Mount Everest’s peak, killing 18 people.
The terrifying avalanche was captured on video by several climbers, including German climber Jost Kobusch who posted it to YouTube.
“The ground was shaking from the earthquake and as soon as we saw people running we were running ourselves to save our lives,” Kobusch wrote on his YouTube page.
Other climbers caught in the avalanche included Alan Hancock, an Edmonton resident, who was attempting to become the first Canadian to summit the world’s 14 tallest peaks. He was forced to dig himself out using a knife.
A second deadly quake struck Nepal on May 12. Since the devastating quakes several Nepalese World Heritage sites have reopened and the country continues rebuilding efforts following the disaster.