Bad weather caused chopper crash in Nepal

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

KATH­MANDU: Bad weather likely caused a US he­li­copter to crash in Nepal while on an aid mis­sion to help vic­tims of April’s mas­sive earth­quake, killing 13 peo­ple, the United States Marine Corps said. The UH-1Y Huey he­li­copter was de­liv­er­ing re­lief sup­plies and evac­u­at­ing in­jured quake vic­tims to Kath­mandu when it went miss­ing on May 12, the same day a deadly after­shock hit the Hi­malayan na­tion. Six US Marines, two Nepalese sol­diers and five vil­lagers died in the ac­ci­dent, the Marine Corps said Fri­day in a press re­lease sum­maris­ing the re­sults of their in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the crash.

Af­ter pick­ing up in­jured civil­ians from north­ern Do­lakha dis­trict, the crew de­cided to fly the most di­rect route to the cap­i­tal, ap­par­ently to se­cure ur­gent med­i­cal aid, the in­ves­ti­ga­tion found. “The cho­sen course re­quired a brief pe­riod over un­fa­mil­iar ter­rain with un­sta­ble me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal con­di­tions,” the Marine Corps 3rd Ex­pe­di­tionary Force, based on the Ja­panese is­land of Ok­i­nawa, said. “It is be­lieved that the air­craft... was en­veloped by rapidly de­vel­op­ing clouds or lifted into a cloud by ris­ing air cur­rents,” it said. “As they at­tempted to ma­neu­ver out of the weather con­di­tions, they lost vis­ual ref­er­ence with the ter­rain and im­pacted the ground.”

Re­lief teams from 18 na­tions, in­clud­ing In­dia, China and the United States, spent weeks work­ing to pro­vide wa­ter, food, shel­ter and med­i­cal as­sis­tance to Nepal af­ter a 7.8-mag­ni­tude quake struck on April 25. The dis­as­ter killed nearly 9,000 peo­ple, de­stroyed more than half a mil­lion homes and left thou­sands with­out shel­ter just weeks be­fore an­nual mon­soon rains. —AFP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Kuwait

© PressReader. All rights reserved.