Kailash Helicopter’s chopper makes emergency landing after bird strikeThe helicopter's windshield has been damaged and passengers suffered minor injuries due to the impact.
A helicopter made an emergency landing in Nuwakot on Sunday afternoon after it was hit by a bird. All five passengers and the pilot on board are reported to have been safe.
The chopper, belonging to Kailash Helicopter, was en route from Baglung to Kathmandu when it was hit by a bird at around 1:40pm.
“It had to make an emergency landing near a landfill site in Kakani of Nuwakot, nearly 32km north-west of Kathmandu,” said Pratap Jung Pandey, managing director of Kailash Helicopter. “The passengers and the pilot have suffered minor injuries, but they are safe. The windshield of the helicopter has been damaged.”
Though bird hits were not considered a serious problem in Nepal in earlier days, since 2010, there has been a significant rise in the number of incidents of birds hitting different types of aircraft, including helicopters.
According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal, development of landfill sites, particularly within 10-km radius of airports, is a major problem, waste dumped there attracts bird activities. Since there is an increased movement of migratory birds during winter, more incidents of bird hits are usually reported during these months.
According to Pandey, another helicopter was dispatched to the site to airlift the passengers.
Nepal has not reported any major helicopter crash since February last year when seven people including then tourism minister had perished when an Air Dynasty chopper crashed shortly after taking off in Nepal’s eastern mountains.
Before that, back in September 2006, a Shree Air helicopter, en route from Phungling of Terhathum to Ghunsa, had crashed during bad weather, killing all 24 passengers and crew on board, including a junior forest minister and an expedition team of World Wide Fund for Nature.