The plane that took off around 6.30 crash landed on the bank of Manohara river, barely 3-km away and the plane descended down, engulfed by fire. "A probe is going to be ordered soon and we will not speculate about the cause at this moment," Civil aviation official said. Speculations at the moment vary from possibility of a bird-hit or an engine failure being the cause.
This is the second plane accident in Nepal in four months, the earlier one being at Jomsom, along Nepal-Tibet border. The frequency of the accident in Nepal's air-traffic has caused lot of concern among the foreigners, and at the same shows weak safety regulatory mechanism of the government.
A sizable number of western tourists coming to Nepal prefer to go for trekking up-mountains, and Lukla is the most favoured destination with a large number of regular as well as chartered flights in operation between Kathmandu and there.
The plane fell into the small empty space of the Jadibuti area with no damage caused to the settlement .
Deputy Inspector General of Police Narayan Bastakoti said the bodies of the victims have been recovered, and sent to the Hospital for postmortem.
Among the 16 passengers, who have died in the Dornier Aircraft 9N AHA D228 crash, were seven British, five Chinese and four Nepalese nationals, according to the Rescue Coordination Committee of the Tribhuvan International Airport.
The three crew members were Nepalese.
"Immediately after the take off, the air traffic controllers noticed the aircraft making unusual maneuvers. When the controller asked the pilot about it, he said the plane had struck a bird," Manager of Tribhuvan International Airport Ratish Chandra Lal Suman said.
"Shortly after, the aircraft crashed. All the bodies have been sent to hospital for post mortem examinations," he said.
The police, army and airport staff rushed to the accident site for carrying out rescue work soon after the crash.
The crew members are identified as Captain Bijaya Tandukar, co-Pilot Takeshi Thapa and airhostess Ruja Shakya.
The country has a poor record in road and air accidents with the latest fatal air crash in Nepal being the sixth in less than two years.
Earlier this year in May, Agni Air's Dornier Aircraft crashed near Jomsom airport in the north of Kathmandu killing 15 people. Those killed in that accident included 13 Indian pilgrims who were heading towards a famous pilgrimage site, Muktinath, near Tibet border.
In September last year, a small Beach Aircraft belonging to Buddha Air, carrying tourists on a mountain flight trip around Everest crashed into a hillside at Godavari village near Kathmandu, killing 19 people, including 10 Indians.
Ticketless passenger killed in Nepal aircrash
A ticketless ride to death!
A Nepalese armyman, travelling without ticket on the ill-fated plane that crashed today, was among the 19 killed in the accident.
Kumar Magar, an armyman, boarded the Sita Airways flight to Lukla without a ticket, myrepublica online reported.
(With agency inputs)
In the recent time this is the second tragedy happened in Nepal. The tourists especially youngsters interested in trekking up mountains better to prefer different safe mode of transport rather than plane to travel within Nepal. At present Life risk is more in plane journey travel within Nepal.