The missing Altitude Air helicopter with seven people onboard has been found crashed at a gorge in Mailung Pakha of Myagang Rural Municipality, Nuwakot. The chopper had gone missing from Samagaun of Gorkha district today morning.
According to Nuwakot police chief SP Basanta Bahadur Kunwar, six persons have been found dead in the crash site while one woman was alive. Altitude Air sources named the woman as Aani Dolma. She has been flown to the Capital for treatment.
A Shree Airlines helicopter with medical team had flown into the crash site while another chopper of Simrik Air flew Sherpa guides with expertise in rope rescue operation. It takes around two hours to reach the crash site from where the rescue choppers are stationed.
Altitude Air owner Sitaram Sapkota informed a helicopter which flew for the rescue operation found the chopper crashed in the jungle. Rescue operations have been hampered by bad weather.
According to the Altitude Air, the chopper went out of contact with the air traffic control tower at around 8:05 am today. Nishal KC was the pilot of the helicopter.
Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) General Manager Rajkumar Chhetri said that the helicopter was supposed to land at the TIA at 8:18 am.
Japanese national Hiromi Komatsu, Dilli Bahadur Gurung, 40, of Ramechhap, Hira Sherpa,37, of Dolakha, Lho Aani Dolma Diki of Chumnubri Rural Municipality-2, Gorkha, Chhewang Nurbu of Chumnubri-1, Sunil Tamang, 22, of Sindhupalchok and Pilot Nichan KC were in the chopper.
The helicopter had landed in Samagaun of Gorkha at 7:35 am today. Four Chinese tourists and a Nepali were there in the chartered flight.
The missing chopper is the B3 version of Airbus company.
(With inputs from Suraj Kunwar, Harihar Singh Rathore and Krishna Thapa. Photos courtesy Sukman Tamang)