A cellphone recovered from the wreckage of the Yeti Airlines plane that crashed in Nepal today captured the last alarming moments of the flight. An ATR 72 aircraft carrying 72 people crashed briefly before landing in Pokhara, a popular tourist destination in the Himalayan nation. Sixty-eight passengers lost their lives.
In the video making the rounds on social media, passengers sit inside the plane as the airplane circles before landing. An explosion suddenly turns the screen topsy-turvy. In the last few seconds, we see a horrifying fire outside the window as distraught passengers scream for help.
As the aircraft began landing, another video was captured from the ground. Suddenly, the plane tilted to the left, turned upside down, and then exploded into flames.
Searches are underway for the plane’s black box, which will likely shed light on the crash’s causes, and rescue work is expected to continue tomorrow. Pokhara is only 25 minutes away from Kathmandu, the capital of the Himalayan region.
In recent years, Nepali aviation has experienced several plane crashes, raising concerns about safety and training.
The European Union has blacklisted Nepal since 2013. After safety concerns were raised by the International Civil Aviation Organization, all flights from Nepal have been banned from EU airspace.
“This aircraft is the best of what we have in Nepal and all the leading airlines have been operating the same aircraft,” MP of Nepal Mr Shah said.
Considering Pokhara’s importance as a tourist destination, he said the country must “upgrade our aviation system, our aircraft, information system, pilots also”.
“It is a serious time for Nepal. I think the present government is serious about this,” he added.