According to Yeti Airlines and a local authority, a plane carrying 72 people crashed on Sunday in Nepal.
“There are four crew members and 68 passengers on board… Rescue efforts are under progress. The existence of survivors is unknown at this time, the airline’s spokesperson Sudarshan Bartaula said AFP.
Between the old and new Pokhara airports, he claimed, a plane had crashed in the heart of Nepal.
Rescuers were working to put out the fire caused by the burning debris, according to Gurudutta Dhakal, a local authority.
#WATCH | A passenger aircraft crashed at Pokhara International Airport in Nepal today. 68 passengers and four crew members were onboard at the time of crash. Details awaited. pic.twitter.com/DBDbTtTxNc— ANI (@ANI) January 15, 2023
Responders have already arrived and are battling the fire. All agencies are currently concentrating on extinguishing the fire and saving the passengers, according to Dhakal.
In recent years, Nepal’s aviation sector has flourished, transporting products and people to remote locations as well as foreign trekkers and climbers.
However, it has suffered from poor safety as a result of inadequate maintenance and training.
Due to safety concerns, the European Union has forbidden all Nepali airlines from using its airspace.
The Himalayan nation also features some of the most difficult and isolated runways in the world, with approaches that are difficult for even experienced pilots.
Aircraft operators claim that Nepal lacks the infrastructure necessary for reliable weather forecasts, particularly in the isolated Himalayan regions where fatal disasters have happened.
In the mountains, the weather may sometimes change suddenly, making it dangerous to fly.
All 22 occupants of a Tara Air flight operated by the Nepali airline perished in the disaster in May 2022, including 16 Nepalis, 4 Indians, and 2 Germans.
Shortly after taking off from Pokhara and heading for the well-known hiking destination of Jomsom, air traffic control lost communication with the twin-propeller Twin Otter.
A day later, its wreckage was discovered scattered across a mountaintop at a height of around 14,500 feet (4,400 meters).
The majority of the 60 participants in the search effort walked for kilometres uphill to get there.
Regulations were strengthened as a result of that accident, and one of them stipulated that planes may only be permitted to fly if the whole route was predicted to experience excellent weather.
51 persons were killed in March 2018 when a US-Bangla Airlines jet crashed-landed close to Kathmandu’s infamously challenging international airport.
The 167 persons aboard a Pakistan International Airlines flight died when it crashed as it approached Kathmandu in 1992, making the catastrophe the country’s deadliest since then.
The same airport was the scene of a Thai Airways plane tragedy two months prior that claimed 113 lives.