Shrubs and bushes around Nepalgunj Airport cleared

Published On: November 3, 2021 12:50 PM NPT By: Arjun Oli

NEPALGUNJ, Nov 3: Shrubs and bushes around the runway at Nepalgunj Airport have been cleaned. This comes after three boars collided with Sita Air's 9N-AHB flight from Nepalgunj to Simkot in Humla on Tuesday.

Clearing of the bushes started from Wednesday after the sporadic movement of wild animals like boars in the bushes around the runway started obstructing the smooth operation of flights from the airport. A large number of security personnel have been mobilized to remove shrubs and bushes around the runway of the airport.

Chief District Officer of Banke, Surya Khatri, informed that 150 personnel of Nepal Police, Armed Police Force and Nepal Army have been deployed to clear the area. "This work should be done by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) from its own budget. But as the number of wild animals colliding with the aircraft has increased lately this needs to be cleaned immediately for safety reasons," said Khatri.

Due to the negligence on the part of Nepalgunj Airport authority, such risks have increased lately. The airport currently has a 1,700-meter runway. There are thick bushes around the runway. Boars, rabbits, porcupines, deer, foxes and other wild animals have started residing there permanently.

There are more than half a dozen daily flights from the airport on the Nepalgunj-Kathmandu route alone. In addition, there are dozens of daily flights to hilly and mountainous districts, but due to the growing wildlife terror on the runways of the airport, most of the aircraft have to fly dangerously.

The airlines have drawn the attention of the Nepalgunj Airport Office, Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) in writing after repeated incidents of wild animals colliding with aircraft at the airport. However, the office has failed to properly address the concern. 

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