Our live page coverage of the Nepal earthquake is now ending. Please check the BBC News website for regular updates as the rescue and relief effort continues.
Earthquake rocks Nepal - as it happened
- A powerful earthquake of magnitude 7.8 has rocked Nepal, killing hundreds of people
- It struck between the capital Kathmandu and the city of Pokhara
- A Nepali minister says there has been "massive damage" at the epicentre
- The landmark Dharahara tower is among buildings reduced to rubble in Kathmandu
Sandesh Kaji Shrestha is in Kathmandu and has been volunteering in the rescue effort. He told the BBC: "Kathmandu has been very badly affected by the earthquake. Some areas are completely destroyed.
"I am in the Thamel area and the Hotel Budget has been completely demolished with more than 50 guests inside. I have been helping to pull people and bodies out of the rubble, along with my friend.
"We pulled a child out with its grandmother earlier. They did not survive. I am most sad. It has been a very bad experience and a terrible and very difficult day. The hospitals are out of control. We need help."
Rob Stiles, from Los Angeles, is on holiday in Kathmandu and told the BBC: "When we felt the earthquake we jumped in the doorway of our hotel. We knew what to do, coming from California.
"There were people running out of our hotel. They just fell to the ground. A wall about eight feet (2.4m) high came down over the road - thankfully no one was crushed. Within 15 minutes there were four aftershocks.
"We headed down the main street where a school's entire facade had come off. There were military and workers unearthing rubble and pulling out bodies. There was a triage set up in the middle of the street.
"It was the biggest earthquake I've ever been in. It felt like it went on for two minutes. Everyone here is just super-confused."
Reports from Chinese state media suggest Gyirong and Tingri counties in south Tibet - just across Nepal's northern border - have been badly affected in the quake. The Chinese government has dispatched a team to the area to assess the damage and relief requirements, Xinhua news agency reports. The above picture shows rescuers helping residents of Xigaze Prefecture in Tibet.
The death toll from the quake in Nepal is now 970, with 539 victims in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal police spokesman Kamal Singh Bam tells the BBC.
Aid agency Plan International's Tanya Barron is in Biratnagar, in the far south-east of Nepal, some 240km (150 miles) from Kathmandu. She says: "There are crowds of people on the streets here and the hospitals are already overwhelmed. Hundreds of people are on the street preparing to sleep outside amid fears of aftershocks."
The agency says the full extent of the damage in Nepal will only be known once rural areas outside Kathmandu are reached.
The nine-story Dharahara Tower - a Unesco-recognised Kathmandu landmark built as a watchtower in the 1800s - has been reduced to rubble and there are reports of people trapped underneath.
At least 10 people are dead at Mount Everest, Reuters news agency now reports, after the quake triggered an avalanche. But climber Robin Trygg, has told Swedish news agency TT his Sherpa guides had been in radio contact with other guides on Everest and that they reported as many as 80 people hit by an avalanche. Many climbers are reported missing and there are fears they could be dead or trapped.
Navin Singh Khadka
The authorities say more traditional houses seem to have been destroyed compared to modern buildings despite fears that the country's lack of strict building codes would mean even modern buildings were vulnerable to an earthquake of this magnitude.
Kathmandu has seen rampant urbanisation over the years and there have been a number of warnings that the buildings could cause huge casualties during an earthquake like this.
Sajiya Gurung in Kathmandu says: "It was terrifying. Everything in the house started falling down. I quickly ran outside, as did all my neighbours. We have been standing outside on the street since. My neighbours and I have been holding hands thanking God we are ok. Many houses have collapsed and people are injured. There is also water everywhere from burst pipes and it is leaking out of the houses in the area. We may have to sleep out here tonight. The weather has improved thankfully, but we're still too afraid to go back into our houses."
At least 876 people have been killed in Nepal, a spokesman for the Nepal police, Kamal Singh Bam, has told the BBC. More than 1,700 have been injured so far. That is a jump on the last reported figure of 758
Navin Singh Khadka
A number of major historic monuments have been destroyed. In Kathmandu, these include a nine-storey tower, temples and some parts of what was once a royal palace, all listed as Unesco world heritage site.
"Some monuments have been reduced to rubble while it is feared others could yet collapse. Such sites are Nepal's major tourist attractions. Nepal had previously lost several such monuments during a major earthquake in 1934."
The quake has killed five people and seriously injured 13 in Tibet, southwest China, Xinhua news agency reports, citing local authorities
CK Lal, a journalist in Kathmandu, tells us about the moment the quake struck: "The whole ground was moving. It was a big sound and then dust everywhere. I saw people running everywhere and shouting. They were many running out of houses. I saw many people injuring themselves trying to escape. There's no electricity, no water. "
The Nepal government has declared a state of emergency in the affected districts and appealed for international humanitarian assistance. Kathmandu Valley and surrounding districts are worst affected, according to the Deputy Prime Minister Bamdev Gautam
Thirty-five people have been killed in India, the federal government tells BBC Hindi
Daniel Lins sent in this picture, close to the Swayambhunath temple in Kathmandu. "As the ground shook under our feet, the large temple crumbled into rubble", he said
Fresh figures on the current death toll continue to emerge via Nepalese officials. The latest grim accumulation states that at least 711 people have died, 467 in Kathmandu. Again we expect the toll to rise further with many people seriously injured and others still hidden beneath rubble.
Singapore's Straits Times has an account from one of its journalists who was at Kathmandu airport when the quake struck. Passengers "began to panic" tripping over one another in a desparate rush to get out of the terminal building, the report says.
The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that shook large areas of Nepal is among the strongest on record.
- Chile, 1960, a 9.5 magnitude quake trigged a tsunami. At least 1,700 people died
- Alaska, 1964, 131 people were killed in a 9.2 earthquake
- Indonesia, 2004, the devastating 9.1 earthquake and ensuing tsunami killed more than 230,000 people in a dozen countries
- Japan, 2011, a 9.0 quake triggered a tsunami, killing more than 18,000 people
- Russia, 1952, another 9.0 earthquake caused damage but no reported casualties
Most of those people known to have died were killed when the earthquake struck Kathmandu (pictured), Nepal's national police have told the BBC. At least 391 people were killed in the capital city, a spokesman said.
Patrick Adams, a photo journalist, was staying at a hotel in Kathmandu when the earthquake hit. He told the BBC: "Things just started falling off the wall, with the whole earth started shaking thing. Everyone ended up in the courtyard and then I have a friend who's a doctor working here at a teaching hospital and I wanted to go up and make sure that he was ok. And I went up to the hospital and it was just pretty terrible scenes, as you might expect. Lot of severely injured folks and truckloads of bodies coming in."
The US Geological Survey is currently putting out some alarming estimates of the likely final toll from the Nepal earthquake. Whether or not these projections are borne out by events, they show why there is such concern for people living in the vulnerable region.
Ben Turner, Exeter, via WhatsApp: "My girlfriend is in Kathmandu, at the city's main airport. The plane was on the runway when the main quake struck, causing serve shaking and the take off to be aborted. The entire airport was evacuated and she had to wait on the runway for a long period of time as the Air Traffic Control tower was also evacuated."
The terrible scale of the human tragedy in Nepal is becoming more apparent by the minute. Nepalese national police have just told the BBC World Service that 565 people have died across the country, scores more than the 449 just reported - and the figure is expected to rise.
More also on those reports of a deadly avalanche at Everest base camp (see 10:35). At least eight people have been killed there according to Nepal's tourism ministry. "The toll could go up, it may include foreigners as well as sherpas," tourism official Gyanendra Shrestha is quoted as saying by Reuters news agency.
It won't be long before darkness will be falling in the affected region, and amid the fear of further aftershocks, many people will be spending the night in open spaces.
At least 13 people are known to have been killed in India by the earthquake, the Indian interior ministry has confirmed to the BBC Hindi Service.
The Nepal government has declared a state of emergency in the affected districts and appealed for international humanitarian assistance. Kathmandu Valley and surrounding districts are worst affected, according to the Deputy Prime Minister Bamdev Gautam. The government has ordered all security forces to get mobilised for rescue efforts.
We have an unconfirmed report in from Reuters quoting Nepali police which puts the death toll in the quake at 449. This would be a major leap upwards from the current confirmed death toll, and we'll update as soon as we have more on this.