Monday, 30 May 2022

Plane with 22 onboard goes missing in Nepal

                                        BREAKING NEWS

A De Havilland Canada DHC-6/300 Twin Otter aircraft operated by Nepalese carrier Tara Air went missing in a mountainous region of the country earlier today. The aircraft is believed to be carrying 22 people onboard, including three crew members. Four of the passengers are Indian nationals, 13 are Nepalese, and two are German. The crew is entirely Nepali and is led by Captain Prabhakar Prasad Ghimire, co-pilot Utsav Pokhrel, while Kismi Thapa has been identified as the sole cabin crew.

The aircraft, registered as 9N-AET, took off from Pokhara Airport (PKR) in central Nepal at approximately 09:55 AM and began flying north-west towards its destination, Jomsom Airport (JMO) in the Mustang district.

Both airports are less than 45 miles apart, but the journey is filled with uneven terrain and steep mountains. The Chief District Officer, Neta Prasad Sharma told the Daily Excelsior that the aircraft was seen over the skies of Jomson and had diverted towards Mount Dhaulagiri before losing contact with the ground at 10:07 AM local time.

Officials in the Himalayan nation suspect the Twin Otter to have crashed onto a mountainside in the "Titi" region of Mustang district.

The DSP of District Police Office in Mustang, Ram Kumar Dani, said,

"Locals from Titi have called and informed us that they have heard an unusual sound as if there was some bang. We are deploying a helicopter to the area for the search operation.”

Two private helicopters have been dispatched to try and locate the aircraft and hopefully, find any survivors. The Nepalese Army has also been pressed in to join rescue efforts. According to Times Now, an Army Mi-17 helicopter has also left for the suspected accident site. As is always the case in such incidents, the first few hours are crucial to maximize the chances of finding survivors.

The Search and Rescue Coordination Center at Nepal's Civil Aviation Authority has released a statement saying the first helicopters sent to search for the aircraft were forced to return due to inclement weather conditions. More rescue helicopters are on standby at nearby airports of Kathmandu, Pokhara, and Jomson, ready to fly once weather conditions allow. While the exact cause of this incident may not be known for quite some time, it is possible that poor weather conditions had a role to play in what went down.

Story sourced from here

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