Today, one of the latest survivors of the disastrous earthquake in Turkey, a 13-year-old boy, was found after surviving over 100 hours on just rainwater.
The child, Ferhat Tokay, was trapped in a collapsed shoe shop since Sunday when the 7.2 quake struck – killing over 575, injuring at least 2,500 and leaving more than 50,000 homeless.
Ercis, Turkey, a city of over 75,000, had over 2,000 buildings crushed in the violent quake. One of these buildings was Tokay’s prison, in which he was trapped for almost a week.
Miraculously, Ferhat was rescued unharmed. Sahin Tokay, the uncle of the lucky survivor told NTV television, “He was hungry on the first day, but the hunger pangs later disappeared.”
“He drank rainwater to keep him alive,” Tokay added.
And Ferhat Tokay is certainly lucky, to say the least. According to Turkey’s crisis management center, only 187 of the people were found alive. Of those, many of them were severely dehydrated.
Because Ferhat is younger and smaller, without the rainwater as sustenance, he could have easily died.
“He didn’t have a scratch on him!” his uncle said.
Ferhat, once dragged from the debris, was placed in a neck brace for transport in an ambulance.
Unfortunately, for Ferhat and many of those who managed to endure the earthquake, there may be no place for them to go after their ordeal.
Numerous tent cities have popped up around Ercis to shelter the 50,000 newly homeless from the harsh Turkish elements. The weather in Van is a bitter 40 degrees, with rain, sleet and snow on the way.
The temporarily homeless are trying to fight the inclement weather conditions with blankets, heaters, and some have prefabricated homes.
Many don’t have resources, however, and have criticized what they say is a lack of government assistance regarding the catastrophe, according to the Associated Press.
Officials responded stating that vehicles containing aid and supplies were raided on their way to Ercis.
Turkey has been accepting any donations from other countries to help with the effort, and the interior minister, Idris Naim Sahin, said today that the tent and supply shortage had subsided, AP wrote.
Sahin also said that searches for survivors would continue “in small sections” of Ercis, which is considered to be the focal point of the earthquake. “Hopefully we will be successful in pulling out survivors,” he told the press.