Why so many incidents of flight accidents happening in Nepal?

The wreckage of the Tara Air plane that went missing in Nepal on Sunday has been found. Four Indians were also on board this plane. The twin-engine plane had taken off from Pokhara to Jomsom on Sunday but disappeared shortly after due to a loss of communication with the air traffic control system.

The wreckage of a plane that went missing with 22 people onboard has been found in the mountains of Nepal’s Mustang district, the military said on Monday. Nearly 24 hours after her disappearance, search and rescue troops were able to “physically locate” the plane crash site in Sanosware, Thasang-2, Nepal Army spokesman Brigadier General Narayan Silwal announced on Twitter.

Nepal has had a long and unfortunate history of plane crashes in the country. It is the 12th aviation tragedy in as many years in the mountain kingdom, making it one of the world’s most dangerous nations for passenger aviation.

Nepal Army finds wreckage of crashed flight in Mustang District, Credit Twitter

In an era where flying has become increasingly safer, accidents in Nepal continue to make headlines. Losses usually involve small propeller planes in bad weather.

The country’s domestic airlines tend to use old and dilapidated aircraft; the twin otter involved in the latest tragedy was in his 40s. There is inadequate training and application of accepted international aviation standards.

Nepal flight; Credit: twitter

In a country with very challenging terrain and unpredictable weather, there is little hope that this litany of tragedies will end any time soon. The International Civil Aviation Organization seeks to reduce the rate of fatal accidents in Nepal. It says: “The beautiful but rugged terrain of the country makes the safety of air operations more challenging than in other areas of the world.”

  • 1992 Thai Airways Airbus A310 Crash: A Thai Airways Airbus A310 crashed, killing 113 people.
  • 1992 PIA Airbus A300 Crash: PIA Airbus A300 crash killed 167 people.
  • 2000 Twin-Otter Crash: 25 people were killed in an incident where a Twin-Otter belonging to Royal Nepal Airlines crashed in Dadeldhura.
  • Yeti Airlines Twin-Otter crash in 2006: The incident killed nine people.
  • Shree Air plane crash in 2006: All 24 people died in an accident in Taplejung, eastern Nepal.
  • March 2008 UN helicopter crash: All 10 people on board died after a UN helicopter crashed in eastern Nepal.
  • Tara Air Twin Otter accident in 2010: 22 people on board, including three crew members, were killed.
  • 2010 Agni Air Flight 101 crash – Agni Air Flight 101 disappeared from radar. All 14 people on board were killed.
  • 2011 Buddha Air Flight 103 crash – On 25 September 2011, a Buddha Air Beechcraft 1900D aircraft crashed near Lalitpur. All 22 people on board, including 10 Indian nationals, were killed.
  • 2012 Sita Air Flight 601 crash – 19 people died after a Sita Air domestic passenger flight crashed while making an emergency landing in Kathmandu.
  • 2012 Agni Air Dornier 228 crash: There were up to 21 people on board, but 15 of them, including the two pilots, lost their lives in the incident.
  • 2016 Tara Air Flight 193 crash: Tara Air Flight 193 disappeared just eight minutes after takeoff. The plane was later carrying 23 people and there were no survivors.
  • 2018 US-Bangla Airlines Flight 211 crash: A US-Bangla Airlines 76-seat Bombardier Q400 was travelling from Dhaka to Kathmandu on March 12, 2018. The plane crashed while landing at Tribhuvan International Airport, killing to 51 of the 71 people on board.
  • February 2019 Air Dynasty – A helicopter crashed into a hill while trying to find its way back to Kathmandu. All seven passengers died. (Nepal flight)

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