Plane carrying 72 people, including 10 foreigners, crashes near Nepal airport

At least 40 dead when a plane carrying 72 people, including 10 foreigners, crashes near an airport in Nepal

  • At least 40 people have died in a plane crash in Pokhara, Nepal
  • There were 72 people on the Yeti Airlines twin-engine ATR 72 plane
  • Local television showed thick black smoke billowing from the crash site
  • Hundreds of rescuers combed the slope where the 15-year-old plane crashed

At least 40 people were killed today when a plane belonging to domestic carrier Yeti Airlines crashed in Pokhara, Nepal, an official with the Nepal Aviation Authority said.

Local television showed thick black smoke billowing from the crash site as rescue workers and crowds gathered around the plane’s wreckage.

The Nepalese Yeti Airlines twin-engine ATR 72 plane was carrying 72 people, including two infants, four crew members and 10 foreign nationals, said airline spokesman Sudarshan Bartaula.

“Rescue operations are underway,” said Jagannath Niroula, spokesman for the Nepal Civil Aviation Authority. ‘Weather was clear.’

The Nepalese Yeti Airlines twin-engine ATR 72 plane contained 72 people, including two infants and ten foreign nationals

The Nepalese Yeti Airlines twin-engine ATR 72 plane contained 72 people, including two infants and ten foreign nationals

Rescuers gather at the site of a plane crash in Pokhara today

Rescuers gather at the site of a plane crash in Pokhara today

40 bodies are said to have been recovered from the wreckage of the plane

40 bodies are said to have been recovered from the wreckage of the plane

Locals watch the wreckage of a passenger plane in Pokhara

Locals watch the wreckage of a passenger plane in Pokhara

Hundreds of rescue workers searched the crash site on the slope.

According to flight tracking website FlightRadar24, the plane was 15 years old.

The ATR72 is a widespread twin-engine turboprop aircraft manufactured by a joint venture between Airbus and Leonardo of Italy. Yeti Airlines has a fleet of six ATR72-500 aircraft, according to its website.

Air accidents are not uncommon in Nepal, home to eight of the world’s 14 highest mountains, including Everest, as the weather can change suddenly and create dangerous conditions.

Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal has called an emergency cabinet meeting after the plane crash, a government statement said.

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Emma Colton

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