CHOPPER CRASH-LANDS AT KATRA; 7 WOUNDED
DGCA Initiates Probe; Team Arriving Today
Jammu, Dec 30: At least seven persons, including a pilot and 6 pilgrims, were injured when a chopper made a crash landing near Katra – base camp of Vaishno Devi cave shrine, near here on Sunday morning. Director General Civil Aviation has initiated a probe in the incident.
Official sources told Greater Kashmir that the Pawan Hans chopper- carrying Vaishno Devi pilgrims, developed a technical snag forcing the pilot to make emergency landing at Salal Dabri near Katra.
Seven persons, including the pilot, were injured in the crash, police sources said adding that the chopper crashed soon after it take-off.
“The helicopter, with 6 pilgrims on board was returning from the Sanjtichat-based helipad and made an emergency landing at the Salal-Dabri area after the pilot detected a technical snag” Jagjeet Kumar, Deputy Inspector General (DIG), Udhampur-Reasi range said.
During the emergency landing, the helicopter tilted due to non-availability of space resulting in injuries seven people, including the six pilgrims, the DIG said.
The injured have been identified as Anita Puri, Arti Puri, Chetan Kumar, Arun Kumar, Mikashi Raj Rani all resident of New Delhi and pilot Col Amarjeet Singh Parmar.
“The pilot managed to land the helicopter averting major tragedy”, sources claimed adding that while the injured pilot was shifted to Army Hospital Udhampur, the other injured were undergoing treatment at District Hospital, Katra.
“Immediately after the crash the another chopper of Global Victra reached to the spot and shifted the injured to Katra Hospital”.
“The pilot had informed the control center about the technical snag. He was in touch and had also informed about the crash landing”, an official claimed.
A Pawan Hans official in Delhi said the pilot detected the technical fault in the engine and made a "precautionary landing".
Katra is a small town situated in the foothills of the Trikuta mountains, where the holy shrine of Vaishno Devi is located. Pawan Hans helicopter services are used to ferry pilgrims between the Sanjichat-based helipad and Katra base camp.
An official spokesman of Raj Bhawan said that the Governor NN Vohra, who is also Chairman of the Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board, directed Navin K. Choudhary, Chief Executive Officer of the Board to immediately proceed to the accident site and supervise the rescue, relief and other required measures.
After being administered urgent medical treatment at Katra, four passengers were referred to the Government Medical College, Jammu, for further examination and treatment, the spokesman said adding that the CEO had arranged their evacuation to Jammu by Helicopter but this could not materialize for want of IAF clearance due to the weather pattern over the Nandni hills.
Consequently all injured passengers were brought to Government Medical College, Jammu, in Critical Care Ambulances and have been declared out of danger.
The Pilot was evacuated from Katra to the Command Hospital, Udhampur, for the required treatment.
He said that on the direction of the Governor, CEO took up the matter with Director General Civil Aviation for initiating time bound inquiry in the matter. “A two-member DGCA Inquiry Team is reaching Katra tomorrow to commence proceedings”, he said.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 30 Dec 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 30 Dec 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 31 Dec 2012 00:00:00 IST
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