Black boxes from fatal Nepal plane crash to be analysed in Singapore

Yeti Airlines Flight 691 smashed into a gorge on Jan 15, killing all 72 people on board. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - Black boxes recovered from a fatal Nepal plane crash will be analysed in Singapore at the request of the investigation authorities in Nepal, said Singapore’s Transport Ministry in a statement on Thursday.

Yeti Airlines Flight 691 smashed into a gorge on its final approach to the newly opened Pokhara International Airport on Jan 15, killing all 72 people on board. It was the country’s worst air crash in 30 years.

The Transport Ministry’s (MOT) Transport Safety Investigation Bureau (TSIB) will help to retrieve and read the data from the plane’s flight recorders, said an MOT spokesman. The analysis will be carried out at TSIB’s flight recorder readout facility, which was set up in 2007. 

“All investigation-related information, including the progress of investigations and the findings, will be handled by the Nepalese investigation authority,” said the spokesman. 

Flight recorders, or black boxes, capture information about a flight such as instrument warnings and audio recordings, and help in piecing together events leading up to an incident. 

The Washington Post reported on Thursday that the Nepali investigation team would be leaving on Friday for Singapore with the flight recorder and cockpit voice recorder. Another report by The Kathmandu Post on Wednesday said the examination is expected to take a week, and will be free. 

In February 2020, MOT and Nepal’s Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate on aircraft accident investigations.

“The MOU covers the use of investigation facilities and equipment, including the flight recorder readout facility, training, and observer attachments,” said the MOT spokesman.

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