Three People Killed as Plane Crashes Into Helicopter Near Mount Everest


The plane crash at the Tenzing-Hillary airport in Nepal left three people dead, injuring four others.

The deceased include Summit Air's co-pilot Sunil Dhungana and assistant sub-inspector of police Ram Bahadur Khadka, who was stationed in Lukla for airport security, airport officials at Lukla were quoted as stating.

Reports suggest the plane skidded off the runway to the right and hit the helicopter as it landed from Kathmandu.

An airport official spoke to Straits Times, saying: "The plane slipped towards the helipad during take-off and collided with two helicopters".

Chief at the Tribhuvan International Airport Raj Kumar Chhetri said the injured persons have been flown on a chopper to Kathmandu for treatment.

"We are not sure about the cause of the accident". Among the dead were the pilot of the plane and two police officers who were near the parked helicopter.

Another policeman died in hospital in Kathmandu, a police spokesman confirmed.

Both aircraft involved in the incident belong to private airline companies that cater to tourists and Nepalese in the country's remote areas.

Hundreds of foreign climbers head to Mount Everest in April during the commercial expedition season, which lasts until May.

The airport, built in 1964, is rated as one of the most unsafe airports in the world due to strong tailwinds and a short runway. It sits at an elevation of 9,334 feet (2,845 meters).