8 Oct 2008

18 dead afer plane crashes in Nepal

7:20 pm on 8 October 2008

Eighteen people have been killed after a passenger plane crashed in Nepal's Everest region.

Airport officials at the Tenzing-Hillary airport in the eastern town of Lukla say only one Nepalese passenger survived as the Yeti Airlines plane crashed during landing.

They say most of those who died were tourists from Germany and Switzerland.

The airport is popular with mountaineers and trekkers heading for expeditions in the Himalayas.

The plane reportedly caught fire after crash-landing and hitting the perimeter boundary at the airstrip.

In fine weather, there are daily flights between Lukla and the Nepalese capital Kathmandu.

The runway is just 20m wide and is set on a slope, with a steep 700m drop at one end.