The death toll for Turkey's earthquake has risen to over 260 people, with around 1,300 people injured, the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Be?ir Atalay has announced.
Following the 7.2-magnitude earthquake that struck eastern Turkey on Sunday, rescue workers aren't getting to casualties fast enough due to a lack of equipment.
Rescue workers have been trudging through the rubble led by cries and whimpers coming from stranded survivors. They have complained about the primitive conditions of their search, explaining that a lack of equipment is not allowing them to carry out the rescue effort fast enough, according to the Hurriyet Daily News.
The rescue team in the worst hit district of Erics, only have one device that helps find people buried under rubble. We have to yell in buildings to see if anyone is there, one worker told the Hurriyet Daily News.
On Sunday a 7.2- magnitude earthquake hit the southeastern province of Van in Turkey, collapsing hundreds of buildings and leaving hundreds dead and stranded between the rubble. The residents have been in complete shock since the hit and there have not been any reports of looting.
The worst hit area was the earthquake prone town of Ercis, close to the Turkish-Iranian border. The Interior Minister, Idris Naim ?ahin, announced that about 80 multistory buildings collapsed in the city of Erci? alone. 40 buildings still had people trapped inside; giving rise to fears that the death toll could increase substantially.
Hundreds of rescue teams worked throughout the night searching for survivors among dozens of destroyed buildings, as aid groups scrambled to set up tents, field hospitals and kitchens to assist thousands left homeless.
People have been advised to stay away from their homes and damaged buildings with fears of them collapsing in the event of more aftershocks. Over 100 aftershocks have already taken place since the quake hit hard on Sunday, with the highest measured at 5.2 magnitudes.
Most residents spent the night outdoors in tents set up by the Red Crescent, other sort shelters with friends and relatives in near by villages. Other residents of means were put up in five-star hotels alone with ministers and municipality leaders.
While he local Turkish health minister, Recep Akdag said there were adequate hospitals and medical staff in the area, local doctors have asked for more help.
Health personal at the Medical Park Hospital have expressed the challenge of working with head injuries due to a lack of equipment and the effects of earthquake damage to the hospital. A doctor at the hospital told the Hurriyet Daily news that patients needed to be directed to hospitals near by in order t receive proper care.
Ambulances from almost all provinces of Turkey were going back and forth between Erci? and Van, carrying wounded from the former. Search-and-rescue teams from different cities were also arriving in Erci?.
Van's earthquake is the worst in Turkey since the August 1999 earthquake in Izmit that killed 17,000 people.