Helicopter carrying 6 passengers, 1 pilot, crashes in Nepal
A helicopter carrying seven people, including one pilot, crashed in Nepal's mountainous region on Saturday, reports said. After the accident, rescue helicopters are scouring the area while soldiers and police officials launched a search operation on foot, Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu said. The area, to the northwest of Nepal's capital, Kathmandu, stretches to about 50 miles (80 kilometers). More details are awaited.
The helicopter is used for rescue in mountainous areas
The ill-fated aircraft was en route from Samagaun of Gorkha district to Kathmandu. It lost communication at around 7:45 AM local time. Raj Kumar Chhetri, general manager at Tribhuvan International Airport, said they are trying to ascertain details about the aircraft. The helicopter, an Airbus manufactured Ecureuil, is widely used for mountain rescues.
Chopper had airlifted patient, was bound for Kathmandu
Himalayan Times quoted eyewitnesses to confirm the aircraft has indeed crashed. The chopper was piloted by senior captain Nishchal KC and was bound for Kathmandu after airlifting a patient. The patient and other passengers, which included five Nepalis and a Japanese national, got on board in Samagaun in Gorkha. The aircraft flew for some 20 miles and then lost communication.
Adverse weather conditions increasing problems, say officials
Police records identified the passengers as Hiromi Komatsu from Japan, Dilli Bahadur Gurung of Ramechhap, Hira Sherpa of Dolakha, Sunil Tamabng of Sindhupalchowk and Lho Ani Dolma Diki and Chhowang Sherpa of Gorkha. A Sherpa said the aircraft didn't catch fire after the crash. He added the terrain and adverse weather conditions are making it difficult for rescuers to reach the site of the accident.