Plane crashes at Kathmandu; 50 feared dead


Plane crashes at Kathmandu; 50 feared dead 

A Bangladeshi plane crashes on Monday with 71 people on board while coming in to land at the airport in Kathmandu, killing at least 50 people, officials said.

The plane, operated by US-Bangla Airlines, was on a flight from Dhaka when it hit an airport fence and burst into flames, said Raj Kumar Chettri, general manager of the airport.

“We have recovered 50 dead bodies so far,” said army spokesman Gokul Bhandari. Several people had been rescued from the burning wreckage of the Bombardier Q400 series aircraft but nine people were still unaccounted for, he said.

plane crashesThe aircraft burst into flames and came to rest in a field near the tarmac of Tribhuvan International Airport. Thick plumes of smoke could be seen from the aircraft.

Many of the bodies that lay on the tarmac covered by cloth were charred, witnesses said. Later, photographs showed the fire had been put out, with army personnel and rescue workers at the scene.

Data from tracking website showed the aircraft was 17 years old. The aircraft descended to an airport altitude of 4,400 feet and then ascended up to 6,600 feet before crashing about two minutes later, the website said.

Nepal has suffered a number of air disasters in recent years, dealing a blow to its tourist industry. US-Bangla Airlines is a unit of the US-Bangla Group, a U.S. Bangladeshi joint venture company. A spokesman for the airline in Dhaka had no immediate comment.

-MARCH 12, 2018/ Kathmandu