Three killed in aircraft runway accident near Everest

Three killed in aircraft runway accident near Everest

The Twin Otter plane had been getting ready to take off for Kathmandu in a hilly area near Mount Everest when it crashed, said an official at the Tenzing Hillary Airport at Lukla.

"The plane slipped towards the helipad during take-off and collided with two helicopters". Hoards of people gathered around the aircraft wreckage following the crash as debris was strewn on the ground.

Four of the passengers and a flight attendant on board the plane were safe, civil administrator Narendra Kumar Rama said.

Another policeman died in hospital in Kathmandu, a police spokesman confirmed. The pilot and three other crew members survived and are being treated at a hospital in Kathmandu after being airlifted there.

"At least two persons have been dead, while few others are injured", local media reported.

Lukla airport is the nearest airport to the world's highest peak Mount Qomolangma, while April-May is the peak climbing season in the Himalayan country.

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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.

The aircraft was operated by Summit Air.

The Tenzing-Hillary Airport sits at an elevation of just over 9,000 feet.

In May 2017, a cargo flight was landing in Lukla when it lost altitude and crashed into a mountain below the runway, killing both pilots.

Seven people, including the country's tourism minister, were killed in February when a helicopter crashed in the hilly east.

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