Aviation

Nepal to tighten aviation laws in wake of deadly crash

After another deadly crash, Nepal’s aviation authority has decided to mandate changes in flight permits to prevent further tragedies.

These rules will prevent pilots from deciding to fly in difficult weather, giving the airports themselves the authority.

The rule change was made by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) and it mandates that all flights follow the visual flight rules (VFR) and only be flown if the weather is clear all the way to the destination.

Prior to the rule change, weather conditions at take-off and landing were considered and not for the path between. But the recent crash of the De Havilland Canada DHC-6-300 Twin Otter aircraft, which was operated by Tara Air, made authorities realise the rule was not adequate in ensuring flight safety.

CAAN’s notification said that the pilot in command will no longer decide on the feasibility of flights and the decision to fly, regarding the weather, will be made at the airport.

“We will continue to depend on the data provided by the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology to decide if the weather condition is okay at any place,” the deputy director-general of CAAN, Devendra Lal Karna, said.

Preliminary investigations into the recent plane crash suggested that poor weather was likely the cause of the accident. CAAN’s initial assessment indicated that the Tara Air plane crashed into the mountains after swerving right instead of left due to poor weather.

The wreckage of the plane was found in Sanosware, Thasang-2 of Mustang district, and officials declared that none of the 22 onboard survived the crash.

CAAN’s new guidelines state that airlines will be required to submit weather forecasting information acquired from the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology regarding the weather of the flight destination and en route.

Nepal has a history of aircraft crashes, due, in part, to the mountainous terrain throughout the country and sudden weather fluctuations.

In early 2018, a US-Bangla Airlines flight from Dhaka to Kathmandu crashed on landing and caught fire, killing 51 of the 71 onboard.

All 167 aboard a Pakistan International Airlines plane were killed when it crashed into a hill as it tried to land in Kathmandu in the early 90s.


Featured Image: Twitter/AirportWebcams



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