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UK engineers on fresh Nepal rebuild mission

Five workers from the British offices of consultants Turner & Townsend and Ramboll have travelled to Nepal to lead efforts to analyse the structural damage to hospitalscaused by the massive earthquakes earlier this year.

They will work with four teams of local structural engineers and surveyors to assess the rebuild requirements for nine damaged health hubs.

The UK government’s Department for International Development (DFID) set up the pro bono aid mission, which follows a trip by the same workers last year to train the local staff they will now be working with.

On 12 May, Nepal suffered a magnitude 7.4 earthquake just weeks after a devastating magnitude 7.8 quake hit the west of the country.

Turner & Townsend associate director Leonie Grover is in Nepal with four Ramboll engineers: Jeremy Foster, Sean Smeltzer, Tom Hough and Davide Pedicone.

Grover said: “Two months after the first devastating earthquake hit Nepal, the TV cameras may have moved on, but the disaster relief work is far from over. And the hard work of rebuilding the country’s shattered infrastructure is just beginning.

“I’m returning to Nepal full of excitement, but under no illusions about the scale of the task that awaits me.

“Turner & Townsend’s previous work for DFID in Nepal was all about training Nepali engineers and surveyors and helping the country to prepare for the worst.Now the worst has happened, the importance of our work has been thrown into sharp relief. Working with colleagues from Ramboll, DFID, and Nepal, we have a crucial role to play in helping the Nepali government to repair and rebuild several essential hospitals.”

Ramboll director Dave Grove said: “The teams found the level of damage varied between each building we inspected. We hope our work will help the Nepali authorities and DFID prioritise which hospital buildings need repairing most urgently.”

Two civil engineers flew to Nepal in April to aid the search and rescue effort following the first catastrophic earthquake.

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