Rescuers spot one more body near Nepal plane crash site: Official
Rescuers who pulled out 20 bodies from the wreckage of the crashed Nepalese plane have spotted one more body but due to rain and difficult terrain it has not been retrieved yet while another is still missing, an official said on Monday.
The turboprop Twin Otter 9N-AET plane belonging to Tara Air went missing on Sunday morning in the mountainous region of Nepal minutes after taking off from the tourist city of Pokhara.
The Canadian-built plane, flying from the city of Pokhara to the popular tourist town Jomsom in central Nepal, was carrying four Indian nationals, two Germans and 13 Nepali passengers, besides a three-member Nepali crew.
Rescuers have pulled out 20 bodies from the crash site, a spokesperson for the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) said.
One more body has been spotted but due to rain and difficult terrain it's not been retrieved yet, the spokesman said, adding that one person was still missing.
The spokesperson said that 10 bodies were brought to Kathmandu, while 10 bodies were taken to Pokhara from where they would be brought to Kathmandu.
In a statement, the CAAN earlier said that the plane had crashed at Thasang-2 in Mustang district at the height of 14,500 feet.
The airline's passengers list identified four Indians as Ashok Kumar Tripathy, his wife Vaibhavi Bandekar (Tripathy) and their children Dhanush and Ritika. The family was based in Thane city near Mumbai.
Their family members from India are waiting in Kathmandu for identification of bodies.
Pieces of the wreckage of the aircraft were found after nearly 20 hours since the plane went missing, the Nepal Army said on Monday.
The plane took off at 9:55 am from Pokhara and lost contact with air control about 12 minutes later at 10:07am, according to the Civil Aviation Authority.
Nepal, home to eight of the world's 14 highest mountains, including Everest, has a record of air accidents.
In 2016, all 23 people aboard were killed when a plane of the same airline flying the same route crashed after takeoff.
A plane flying from Pokhara to Jomsom crashed near Jomsom airport on May 14, 2012, killing 15 people.
Tara Air is the newest and biggest airline service provider in the Nepalese mountains, according to the airline website. It started its business in 2009 with the mission of helping develop rural Nepal.