In West Nepal, searchers used drones and rappelled into a 200-metre-deep gorge to look for two passengers who remained missing following the nation’s deadliest plane crash in 30 years, which left at least 70 people dead on Tuesday.
The Yeti Airlines ATR 72 turboprop carrying 72 passengers crashed in clear weather on Sunday minutes before landing, impeding rescue attempts close to the tourist resort of Pokhara.
Ajay KC, a police official in Pokhara said, “There is thick fog here now. We are sending search and rescue personnel using ropes into the gorge where parts of the plane fell and were in flames.”
On Monday, two more bodies were discovered by searchers before they had to abandon the effort due to low light. Television broadcasts featured images of some grieving family members standing outside a Pokhara hospital where autopsies are being performed while they wait for the body of their loved ones.
“There were small children among the passengers. Some might have been burnt and died, and may not be found out. We will continue to look for them,” KC added.
Searchers discovered the flight’s cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder on Monday, both of which were in good shape. This finding is likely to aid investigators in determining what caused the disaster.
International aviation regulations mandate that the governments of the nations where the flight and its engines were conceived and constructed are automatically involved in the investigation.
Pratt & Whitney Canada produced the flight’s engines, and ATR is based in France. Air accident investigators from France and Canada have indicated that they intend to take part in the investigation.
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