KATHMANDU, Nepal — A new powerful earthquake convulsed the traumatized nation of Nepal on Tuesday, leveling buildings already damaged by the devastating quake that killed thousands of people less than three weeks ago.
The magnitude 7.3 earthquake Tuesday was centered in a remote area of eastern Nepal, near the border with China. It struck at a depth of about 15 kilometers (9 miles), the U.S. Geological Survey said, slightly revising its earlier estimates.
The earthquake shook a country still picking up the pieces from the magnitude 7.8 quake that hit central Nepal on April 25, killing more than 8,000 people.
The bustling city was once again plunged into panic.
“All the people are on the streets,” said Phurba Sherpa, a freelance journalist in Kathmandu. He said the quake felt “very big.”
Another resident of the capital, Mingma Sherpa, said he and his friends jumped out of his car when they felt the earth begin to tremble. They ran with crowds of other people desperately seeking open space in a congested area of Kathamandu where there are few.
Manesh Shrestha, a CNN producer, was with a group of people helping to clear debris in a town outside Kathmandu when the new quake struck.
He said it caused three or four damaged houses nearby to start to collapse.
Sabin Shrestha, a social activist in a village on the outskirts of Kathmandu, said dozens of houses around him that had suffered cracks in the last earthquake came down.
In Sindupalchowk, an area north of the capital that was heavily hit by the previous quake, journalist Anil Thapa reported multiple landslides and fallen houses.
Tuesday’s earthquake struck about 70 kilometers from Mount Everest, where the April quake set off deadly avalanches.
The extent of the damage near the quake’s epicenter wasn’t immediately clear Tuesday.
The tremors were felt across the region, including in the Indian capital of New Delhi.
The initial quake was followed by a series of aftershocks, the strongest measuring magnitude 6.3, the USGS said.
Jack Board, a reporter at Channel NewsAsia, filmed chaotic scenes at Kathmandu Airport of hundreds of people running from the building as the ground shook.
CNN’s Sugam Pokharel, Moni Basu, Pamela Boykoff, Bex Wright, Hilary Whiteman and Sumnima Udas contributed to this report.