Published: Tue, March 13, 2018
Money | By Hannah Jacobs

Nepal: Plane Crash At Kathmandu Airport Leaves 49 Dead

Nepal: Plane Crash At Kathmandu Airport Leaves 49 Dead

A police spokesman, Manoj Neupane, said that 49 people died and that 22 injured were being treated at three hospitals.

Rescue workers rushed to the scene of a US-Bangla Airlines jetliner that crashed at an airport in Kathmandu, Nepal, on Monday.

Said army spokesman Gokul Bhandari: "We have recovered 50 bodies so far".

"The aircraft was permitted to land from the Southern side of the runway over Koteshwor but it landed from the Northern side", Director General of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (Caan) Sanjiv Gautam.

Nepal: Plane Crash At Kathmandu Airport Leaves 49 Dead
Nepal: Plane Crash At Kathmandu Airport Leaves 49 Dead

US-Bangla Airlines chief executive Bimran Asif said a misunderstanding between the control tower at Kathmandu airport and the pilot might have caused the accident.

Flights out of the airport were canceled after the incident. Officials say at least 50 people were killed.

As the conversation continues, there's even more confusion as to which aircraft has been cleared to land, with the controller speaking to BanglaStar211 and BanglaStar212 at the same time.

The Bangladeshi Foreign Ministry said 25 Bangladeshi nationals were identified among the deceased. Other sources said the aircraft was 17 years old.

Survivor Sanam Shakya, who climbed out of a window of the smouldering plane, said he didn t realise the aircraft was in trouble until it hit the ground.

Nepal too has a record of poor air safety. According to Sky News, passengers on board included 33 from Nepal, 32 from Bangladesh, one from China and another from the Maldives. The parent company, part of US-Bangla Group, is involved in sectors that include real estate, education and agriculture.

However, airport authorities did not disclose the nationality of the crew members. The plane was carrying 71 passengers when it changed direction on the runway.

There is silence for a while, then a "Fire One" calls the tower, indicating that a crash has occurred and the airport fire tender has been activated.

The Bangladeshi carrier, which launched operations in July 2014 with a slogan - "Fly Fast-Fly Safe", operates Bombardier and Boeing BA.N aircraft.

A Thai Airways plane crashed near the airport that same year, leaving 113 people dead.

There has been a series of accidents at Kathmandu's airport in the past.

The plane had circled the airport twice as it waited for clearance to land, Mohammed Selim, the airline's manager in Kathmandu, told Dhaka-based Somoy TV station.

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