Nepal, a country renowned for its stunning landscapes, has been marred by a series of tragic plane crashes over the years. The rugged terrain, unpredictable weather patterns, and limited visibility make aviation operations in Nepal particularly challenging. This article explores the frequent plane crashes in Nepal and sheds light on the factors contributing to these incidents.
- Yeti Airlines Crash in Pokhara (2023): In January 2023, a devastating accident occurred when a Yeti Airlines flight crashed near Pokhara. The aircraft, carrying 72 passengers and crew members, tragically plummeted into a steep gorge and burst into flames, resulting in the loss of all lives on board.
- Tara Air Crash in Mustang District (2022): In May 2022, a Tara Air plane crashed in Mustang district, claiming the lives of all 22 individuals on board. The crash highlighted the dangers associated with aviation operations in Nepal’s remote regions.
- US-Bangla Airlines Crash near Kathmandu (2018): A tragic accident near Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport involved a US-Bangla Airlines flight in 2018. The plane crash-landed, leading to the loss of 51 lives and causing injuries to 20 others.
- Pakistan International Airlines Crash in Kathmandu (1992): Considered the deadliest air accident in Nepal’s history, a Pakistan International Airlines flight crashed during its approach to Kathmandu airport in 1992. Sadly, all 167 passengers and crew members onboard perished in the incident.
- Thai Airways Crash near Kathmandu (1992): Another significant plane accident occurred near Kathmandu airport, involving a Thai Airways aircraft, just two months before the Pakistan International Airlines crash. Tragically, 113 lives were lost in this tragic event.
Factors Contributing to Frequent Plane Crashes in Nepal: Nepal’s challenging topography, including remote and hard-to-reach airstrips, poses a significant hurdle for safe aircraft operations. The Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla is often regarded as one of the world’s most perilous airports. Additionally, the country’s unpredictable weather patterns and limited visibility further complicate air travel.
The air safety report by Nepal’s civil aviation authority in 2019 highlighted the unique obstacles faced by the country’s aviation sector. Diverse weather patterns, challenging topography, and poor air safety and aircraft standards contribute to the increased risk. Insufficient training and maintenance practices have also plagued Nepal’s aviation industry.