Nepal has a worrying record of aviation accidents, due in part to its sudden weather changes and airstrips located in inaccessible, rocky terrain. Pokhara International Airport, which has been closed for at least a day, is also in difficult terrain, making rescue operations a daunting task.
On January 15, 2023, a Yeti Airlines plane crashed near the runway near Pokhara International Airport in Nepal. The 72-seater plane crashed into the Seti River gorge between the old airport and Pokhara International Airport when it landed around 11 am. It carried 68 passengers and 4 crew members. No one has been reported alive and more than 32 bodies have been recovered.
Nepal has a worrying record of aviation accidents, due in part to its sudden weather changes and airstrips located in inaccessible, rocky terrain. Pokhara, 200 kilometers (125 miles) west of Kathmandu in Nepal, is a popular tourist destination known as the gateway to the Annapurna Circuit, a popular Himalayan walk. Pokhara International Airport is also located in difficult terrain, making rescue operations a difficult task.
The Nepalese government has ordered an investigation into the plane crash. Even though Pokhara International Airport is closed to all incoming and outgoing flights for at least a day, it has set up a panel.
Take a look at aviation accidents in Nepal:
2018: On March 12, 2018, a 76-seat Bombardier Q400 of American-Bangladesh Airlines crashed while landing at Tribhuvan International Airport from Dhaka to Kathmandu. Of the 71 people on board, 51 were killed. The crash occurred due to “pilot error and loss of situational awareness”.
2012: On September 28, a domestic passenger plane of Sita Airlines crashed during an emergency landing in Kathmandu, killing all 19 people on board. The plane, which was flying from Kathmandu to Tenzing Hillary Airport, attempted an emergency landing due to technical problems.
2012: In the same year, Agni Air’s Dornier 228 crashed near Jomsom airport on May 14, taking off from Pokhara with 21 people on board. Of the 21 people on board, 15 passengers, including the pilot, were killed.
2011: On 25 September, Buddha Air’s Beechcraft 1900D crashed near Lalitpur, killing 22 people on board. Ten Indian nationals were killed in the crash.
2010: On December 15, 2010, a Tara Airlines DHC-6 Twin Otter crashed en route from Lamidanda to Kathmandu, killing 22 people on board.
2010: Agni Air Flight 101 disappeared after takeoff from Kathmandu and Lukla and was later found to have crashed, killing all 14 people on board.