Short Take Off and Landing (STOL) operations and the extreme topographical conditions are the main causes of air accidents in the country, according to minister for culture, tourism and civil aviation Ram Kumar Shrestha.
However, the government is trying to improve air safety, he said, during the inauguration of the five-day training workshop as part of the ‘Aviation Safety Awareness Campaign’ organised by the Airlines Operators Association of Nepal (AOAN) here today.
Nepali skies have become a matter of concern for foreign tourists and insurance companies due to the high rate of accidents in the last five years. The aviation sector has stepped up with an initial programme on Safety Management System with 160 participants from 17 different airline companies, including pilots, engineers, managers, and ground crew with the assistance of International Civil Aviation Organisation certified trainers provided by the World Food Programme with an aim to enhance the level of air safety and to also educate user groups including reinsurance companies worldwide.
The training, that will last till Friday, has been supported by various organisations including Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN), IFC — a member of the World Bank Group, and Yeti Airlines. On the occasion, director general of CAAN Tri Ratna Manandhar, appreciating the private sector's efforts in initiating the air safety campaign, assured of the authority’s support.
Chief of the Aviation Safety Unit Capt Samir Sajet, IFC resident representative Valentino S Bagatsing and chief of WFP Nepal Office Nicole Menage, on the occasion, shared their views on air safety in Nepal and ensured their support. President of AOAN Capt Rameshwor Thapa invited concerned stakeholders to join hands with the aviation sector and informed that the campaign was launched to promote safe flying.
PATA Nepal Chapter is the industry partner of the event and is helping integrate the domestic tourism industry including Nepal Tourism Board and international partners to join hands in the initiative to make Nepal a ‘Safe Air Travel’ destination, informed chairman of PATA Nepal Chapter Suman Pandey.The workshop also witnessed technical papers on ‘Threat and Error Management’ by Capt Peter Stein (Johansen Control – FSF) and Thomas Anthony (University of Southern California); Safety Reporting System - The need to have the State in the Loop by Antonio Pelaez (SENASA); Safety Management System Training by Ghadier Khattari (RJ Airlines) and Kamal Tariq (DIAL, IGIA), and Quality Aviation for Operation by Matthew Wickens (Emirates Airlines).