It was like a nuclear bomb explosion: a tourist spoke about the horrors of the earthquake in Turkey

It was like an explosion of a nuclear bomb: a tourist spoke about the horrors of the earthquake in Turkey

“It was like an explosion of a nuclear bomb,” a tourist who ended up in southern Turkey, almost at the epicenter of the earthquake, shared his impressions. British tourist Timothy, a software developer and professional traveler, was in the city of Antakya in the province of Hatay at the time of the earthquake, survived purely by chance and told The Mirror about the horror he experienced.

According to him, whole neighborhoods were leveled in the city, and the old city, once known for its winding cobbled streets, is now completely covered with concrete, glass and twisted metal, minarets collapsed near mosques … “I have been to Turkey and have already come across small earthquakes. But I have never come across such a situation. At first I heard some kind of strong splash, as if something huge had fallen into the pool. Then hell began. It was like an explosion of an atomic bomb – in a matter of minutes or even seconds, everything began to collapse, ”said the traveler.

At the time of the disaster, he himself was in a hotel that was badly damaged by tremors, but still he was lucky to remain intact. “I tried to get out the door, and at first I couldn’t. There were screams and panic everywhere. When we left the building, it was a completely different world, it was hell and chaos, ”says the Briton. He also states that in the first hours he did not see “a single person in uniform” and, accordingly, no organized rescue work was carried out. Panic-stricken people tried to dismantle the rubble with their bare hands or picked up twisted rebar and other building debris to try and move the rubble, often to no avail.

“To this day, when I close my eyes to sleep, I see these families in pink pajamas running down the street with lanterns, trying to escape the rubble that is still falling from all sides. One woman screamed with the loud voices they make at funerals, others ran down the street barefoot, calling for help to their family under the rubble,” tourist Timothy narrates.

According to him, the British also remained under the rubble. Anas Sveid of the British charity Care International was killed along with his wife and daughter after their house collapsed in Antakya. Only his son was rescued from the rubble alive.

“It would be difficult for any government to deal with a disaster of this magnitude, but the region is uniquely ill-prepared for such a disaster,” adds the Briton. He also added that he felt “strong guilt” because of his luck. “Don't think 'here's a guy who lived through hell', think of those who might still be alive but trapped in what they're going through!” – an eyewitness tourist also appealed.

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