KATHMANDU, Nepal –
The wreckage of a plane carrying 22 people that went missing in the mountains in Nepal was found on Monday, scattered across a mountainside, the military said. No word about survivors.
Tara Air’s Twin Otter turboprop jet was making a 20-minute flight on Sunday when it lost contact with the airport’s tower while flying over an area with deep river gorges and mountain peaks just before it was scheduled to land.
The military said the plane crashed in Sanosware in the Mustang district near the mountain town of Jomsom, where it was heading after taking off from the resort town of Pokhara, 200 kilometers west of Kathmandu.
An aerial photo the military posted on Twitter of the crash site shows parts of the plane scattered around a mountainside.
No details have been given.
The search for the plane was suspended due to bad weather and dark on Sunday night but was resumed on Monday.
According to tracking data from website flightradar24.com, the 43-year-old plane took off from Pokhara at 9:55 a.m. (04:10 GMT) and last signaled at 10:07 a.m. (04:22 GMT). at an altitude of 3,900 meters.
Four Indians and two Germans were on board. Three crew members and other passengers were of Nepalese nationality.
The plane destination is popular with foreign hikers hiking the mountain trails and also Indian and Nepali pilgrims visiting the revered Muktinath temple.
The Twin Otter, a rugged aircraft originally built by Canadian aircraft manufacturer De Havilland, has served in Nepal for about 50 years, during which it has been involved in about 21 crashes, according to Aviationnepal. com.
The aircraft, with its top-mounted wings and fixed landing gear, is prized for its durability and ability to take off and land on short runways.
Production of the original aircraft ended in the 1980s. Another Canadian company, Viking Air, brought the model back into production in 2010.