Lately I’ve been doing research into high altitude mountaineering because it’s something I’ve never done and the experience looks amazing!! For my first I want to do Peak Island in Nepal. I’m well aware that Island Peak is on trend and will probably be busy but it looks amazing! .
Now I hear a plane has crashed in Nepal and loads of people dead. Check the BBC news site for picture of the crash site! It was horrendous. The bodies need to be identified through DNA testing. Shocking and sad for everyone involved.
I began to become pretty irrational started to think ‘I’m not going there, I’ll get kill in a plane crash never mind the mountain!’. Then I slapped myself and decided to look at the statistics but they’ve not helped too much.
Below I’ve created a chart based on the official figures of fatalities in Nepal from air crashes. It’s not very reassuring at a glance.
The blue bars are fatalities and the red line is the number of people arriving in Nepal by plane. This is not meant to be a direct comparison more a guide on air travel usage in Nepal.
We can see that the total fatalities does look as if it increases with time. However, so does air travel. You would expect the ‘number’ of fatalities to go up if more people are travelling. What you are looking for is an increased rate of fatalities. This doesn’t seem to be happening, at least up until the past 3 years!
2003, 2005, 2007, 2009 are all years with no deaths. For 8 years fatalities were recorded every second year. Since 2010 there have been fatalities every year. This would suggest an increased rate of fatalities. This increased rate is in-line with a large and prolonged spike in air travel in Nepal.
This increase in air travel coupled with lack of safety measures is probably taking it’s toll on the aviation infrastructure in Nepal and is leading to more serious crashes.
What this recent crash has shown is that Nepal needs to spend money on and tighten up their regulations on the aviation industry. Whether it was bird hitting the plane or a pilot error there needs to be more checks in place. Everything from proper runways to mechanical maintenance of the planes.
As for my trip to Nepal…jury is still out!