Eyewitness video shows aftermath of Kathmandu plane crash
14 March, 2018, 00:25 | Author: Jason Torres
A plane carrying 71 people from Bangladesh swerved erratically and flew dangerously low before crashing and erupting in flames as it landed Monday in Kathmandu, Nepal's capital, killing at least 50 people, officials and witnesses said.
Nepal has suffered a number of air disasters in recent years, dealing a blow to its tourist industry. The Bangla delegation includes Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism A K M Shahjahan Kamal, Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali and senior aviation officials, the report said.
In response, the controller tells the pilot, "I say again, turn!" in a tone that is rarely used in air traffic communications.
It said Kathmandu'sairport was closed due to the accident, and inbound flights were either turning back or being diverted elsewhere. According to the BBC, since 1949, when the first aircraft landed in the country, more than 70 aircraft and helicopter drops have been recorded. At one stage, ground control said runway 20 had also been cleared for landing, however.
Recordings of the conversation between air traffic control and the pilot appear to indicate confusion over which end of Kathmanduairport's single runway the plane was to approach. We were all scared that everything was done in front of our eyes, "said a woman who was on another plane at the same airport". At one point, the controller told the woman copilot she was heading toward runway 20, although the aircraft had been cleared for runway 02. The pilot was then asked if he has the runway in sight, to which he replies, "Negative", it said. Eventually the plane made an attempt to land on the runway it was originally meant to use, but crashed short of it, broke into pieces and caught fire.
There were 33 Nepali passengers, 32 from Bangladesh, one from China and one from the Maldives.
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