Three killed in aircraft runway accident near Everest

A Summit Air Let L-410 Turbolet aircraft bound for Kathmandu is seen after it hit two helicopters during take off at Lukla airport

A Summit Air Let L-410 Turbolet aircraft bound for Kathmandu is seen after it hit two helicopters during take off at Lukla airport

At least three people have been killed and four others injured at the Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Nepal after a small plane crashed into a helicopter during a botched take-off.

Co-pilot of the Summit Air plane Sujit Dhungana and Assistant Sub-inspector (ASI) of the Nepal Police deployed for security of the airport Ram Bahadur Khadka were killed on the spot while another ASI Rudra Bahadur Shrestha breathed his last while undergoing treatment in Kathmandu, according to the police.

The injured were airlifted to Kathmandu by helicopter, Nepal police spokesman Uttam Raj Subedi said.

The incident occurred as the aircraft with registration 9N-AMH skidded off the runway while preparing to take off and hit two helicopters parked 30-50 metres from the runway.

Both airlines are private companies serving locals and tourists in the remote areas of Nepal.

The accident happened at Lukla airport which is the main gateway to the Everest region and is reputed to be one of the most hard in the world for landings and take-offs. The aircraft had hit the helicopters of Manang Air and Shree Air.

Lukla airport is the nearest airport to Mount Everest, while April-May is the peak climbing season in the Himalayan country. It sits at an elevation of 9,334 feet (2,845 meters).

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