Nepal plane hits parked helicopter while taking off, killing three

A Summit Air aircraft crashed into two helicopters while attempting take-off at Lukla airport in Nepal

A small passenger plane crashed into a parked helicopter during takeoff at the only airport in Nepal's Everest region on Sunday, killing at least three people and injuring four others, officials said.

The Summir Air plane was reportedly en route to Kathmandu from Lukla.

An airport official spoke to Straits Times, saying: "The plane slipped towards the helipad during take-off and collided with two helicopters".

The plane's pilot, the helicopter's pilot and an airport worker were among the injured.

"Another police officer died in a hospital in Kathmandu".

"We are not sure about the cause of the accident".

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Both airlines are private companies serving locals and tourists in the remote areas of Nepal.

The co-pilot of the plane and a police official stationed at the airport for security were killed on the spot, while another policeman died in hospital, succumbing to a serious injury.

A civil administrator, Narendra Kumar Rana, said the four passengers and a flight attendant on the plane were safe.

Air crashes are common in mostly mountainous Nepal, home to eight of the world's 14 highest mountain peaks, including Mount Everest.

A report quoting Suman Pandey, chief executive officer (CEO) at Fish Tail Air, stated that the incident took place at around 9:10 am at Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla, a major gateway to Mt Everest. The airfield is notorious for its short runway and perilous approach, sitting at an elevation of over 2,800 meters.

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