Ministry asks illegal chopper  ride details

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KATHMANDU, Nepal– The Ministry of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) on Tuesday  sought a detailed report from Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) about the chopper flights made in the Everest region in the wake of April 18 avalanche that killed 16 mountaineering staff and guides.

The CAAN has been given three days to furnish a detailed report about the flights carried out by various copter companies in the Khumbu area from April 18 to till date, according to an official of the Aviation Industry Management Division at MoTCA.

The Ministry’s move follows after two women climbers– Wang Jing, 40, from China, Cleonice Weidlich, 51 of America flew to Mt. Everest and Mt Lhotse this week. International operators, including International Mountain Guides, Alpine Ascents International, Himex, Jagged Globe, Adventure Consultants, and Peak Freaks among others, hired helicopters to bring their climbing equipment and logistics from Camps I, II and Western Cwm to base camp as most of their expedition team members quit  climbing bids.

The Ministry wrote to the Aviation Industry Management Division suggesting the latter to analyze the uses of chopper after Everest tragedy.

The letter issued to CAAN has asked to furnish al details regarding number of flights, chopper companies, flights hours, destinations, purposes and other documents related to flights to the Everest region,” he said. As per the law, except for emergency rescue, choppers can be used above the Base Camp only after getting the nod from CAAN.


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