As rescue teams work around the clock to locate survivors and victims of Sunday’s devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Turkey and Syria, aerial surveaillance photos of two Turkish towns give perspective to the widespread damage and emergency relief efforts underway.
The photos, captured by Maxar Technologies, show the towns of Islahiye and Nurdagi.
In both towns, situated near Turkey’s border with Syria, tall buildings collapsed under the violent shaking, leaving streets filled with debris.
Drag the button to see two large buildings collapsed in the town of Islahiye.
The death toll rose Wednesday to more than 11,000 in the deadliest quake worldwide in more than a decade.
Search teams from more than two dozen countries have joined tens of thousands of local emergency personnel, and aid pledges have poured in from around the world.
Drag the button to see a group of residential buildings, just west of the Hacı Ali Öztürk mosque in Islahiye, that appear to be flattened.
On Tuesday, the Canadian government committed to sending $10 million in initial, direct aid to the countries — money Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says is already flowing. The next day, he also promised the government would match up to $10 million of Canadians’ donations made to the Red Cross.
Drag the button to see before and after images that show the town of Nurdagi with dozens of tractor trailers on the highway.
The scale of destruction from the 7.8 magnitude quake and its powerful aftershocks was so immense — and spread so wide, including in areas isolated by Syria’s ongoing civil war — that many are still waiting for help.
Drag to see photos of Nurdagi’s “Great Garden,” usually a green space with benches, now full of what appear to be emergency tents.
The scale of suffering is staggering in a region already beset by more than a decade of civil war in Syria that has displaced millions within the country and sent more to seek refuge in Turkey. With thousands of buildings toppled, it was not clear how many people might still be trapped underneath the rubble.
Drag to see three residential buildings that have collapsed in the area around the Nurdagi District stadium.
While the rescue efforts are ongoing, access to water and air to breathe are crucial factors, along with weather.
Wintry conditions in Syria and Turkey have hampered rescue efforts and temperatures have dipped well below freezing.
Drag to see the number of tents that have been constructed in a western section of Nurdagi, near a governmental building.
“Typically, it is rare to find survivors after the fifth to seventh days, and most search and rescue teams will consider stopping by then,″ said Dr. Jarone Lee, an emergency and disaster medicine expert at Massachusetts General Hospital.
”But, there are many stories of people surviving well past the seven-day mark. Unfortunately, these are usually rare and extraordinary cases.”
— with files from Global News’ Rachel Gilmore and The Associated Press
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