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Helicopter crashes near Kedarnath, 7 killed including pilots; CM orders probe

Helicopter crashes near Kedarnath, 7 killed including pilots; CM orders probe

By Sanjay Maurya

A chopper carrying Kedarnath pilgrims from Phata village in Uttarakhand crashed near Garud Chatti on Tuesday (October 18), killing all seven people on board. An investigation is underway and seven bodies have been recovered, according to the report. All seven people, including pilots, have been confirmed dead in the helicopter crash that took place about three kilometers from Kedarnath. The helicopter belonged to Aryan Aviation and crashed at around 11:45 am.

A huge plume of smoke is visible in the aftermath of the accident. Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia tweeted on the incident and said that the situation is being continuously monitored.

SDRF’s DIG Riddhima has given information regarding this accident. Riddhima said, “SDRF and police team have reached the spot. Initial investigation suggests bad weather and poor visibility caused the crash. This accident happened at 11.50 am. Bad weather is also hampering the operation.”

“The exact cause of the accident will be known after a proper investigation,” said C Ravi Shankar, CEO, of Uttarakhand Civil Aviation Development Authority.

 

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Expressing grief over this incident, CM Pushkar Singh Dhami has ordered a probe.

This is not the first time; There have been many helicopter accidents in Kedarnath in the past, some are mentioned below: –

  • 2013On June 21, a private helicopter crashed after hitting a hill near GarudChatti.
  • 2013 – The biggest helicopter accident in Kedarnath happened on 25 June 2013. The Kedarnath flood disaster happened at that time. An Army Mi-17 helicopter is engaged in relief and rescue operations. During this, it crashed in the dense hills between Gaurikund and Rambara in fog and bad weather. In this incident, 20 soldiers including a pilot and copilot were martyred.
  • 2013 – On 24 July, a helicopter crashed in Kedar Valley. In this, a copilot and an engineer died.
  • 2018 – On April 3, the Mi-17 of the army crashed after being entangled with an electric wire. In this incident, all the passengers survived safely.
  • 2019 – On 23 September, a helicopter of UTair-Helicopter Company crashed while taking off at the helipad in Kedarnath. But there was no casualty in this accident.

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