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Yeti Airlines ATR 72 Crashes with 72 Onboard in Pokhara

This is a developing story, we will continue to update as more news updates emerge

A Yeti Airlines ATR 72 crashed on the bank of the Seti River while landing at Pokhara International Airport in Nepal.

The ATR 72-500, with registration 9N-ANC was performing flight YT961 from Kathmandu to Pokhara on Sunday morning. Unfortunately, the turboprop crashed on the bank of the Seti River between the old airport and the new airport in Pokhara, about 1.2nm ahead of the runway threshold.

A total of 68 passengers and four crew members led by Captain Kamal KC were on board the crashed aircraft, according to Sudarshan Bartaula, spokesperson of Yeti Airlines. None of the passengers or crew survived, this is the worst accident in the airline’s history and also the worst air crash in three decades in Nepal. 68 dead bodies have been found at the crash site so far, and rescue operations are ongoing.

Footage shared on social media platforms showed plumes of smoke billowing from the crash site.

A rescue team has been deployed to the crash site on a helicopter and the rescue operations are ongoing. Locals, security personnel, armed forces, police, fire brigade and ambulance have been mobilized for rescue.

Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal called an emergency meeting of his cabinet and urged state agencies to work on rescue operations.

In this sorrowful time, we express our deepest condolences to all the victims and their families. May GOD give comfort to you and your loved ones!

Update 8:15 UTC

According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal, 15 foreign nationals were onboard the aircraft, including five Indians, four Russians, and two Koreans. There was also one passenger each from Ireland, Australia, Argentina and France.

Update 11:15 UTC

The Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal confirmed that none of the passengers or crew survived the tragic incident. This is the worst accident in the airline’s history. This crash is also Nepal’s deadliest since 1992, when a Pakistan International Airlines Airbus A300 crashed into a hillside upon approach to Kathmandu, killing all 167 people on board.

Update 16th January, 7:30 UTC

According to local authorities, the Black Box – flight data recorder (FDR) and cockpit voice recorder (CVR) of the 9N-ANC aircraft that crashed in Nepal have been found.

Yeti Airlines is the second largest domestic carrier in Nepal, after Buddha Air. Together with its subsidiary Tara Air, Yeti Airlines have the widest domestic flight network of any Nepali airline and fly to the most destinations in Nepal.

In May 2022, Yeti Airlines’ subsidiary Tara Air Twin Otter crashed en route from Pokhara to Jomsom.

Feature Image via Twitter