Bad weather, rugged terrain caused US chopper crash in Nepal

Bad weather, rugged terrain caused US chopper crash in Nepal
Fellow marines pay their respects to members of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, who were killed in the crash of their military helicopter while coming to the aid of earthquake victims in Nepal, during a memorial service at Camp Pendleton in California on June 3, 2015.
PHOTO: Reuters

The crash of a US military helicopter distributing aid to victims of an earthquake in Nepal in May was caused by bad weather and the rugged terrain of the Himalayan region, Nepal's army said.

The wreckage of the Marines UH-1Y Huey helicopter, which had gone missing on May 12, was found three days later on a steep slope near dense forest high in the mountains.

Six US Marines, two Nepalese soldiers and five civilians were killed in the crash.

"Because of the terrain and bad weather the helicopter ... collided with hard rock and crashed about 11,200 feet (3,413 metres) above the sea level in Kalinchok," Nepal's army said in a statement late on Friday, following a joint investigation with the US military into the accident.

The helicopter was part of a huge international relief and rescue operation for the victims of the earthquake that struck Nepal on April 25.

The quake and a second tremor on May 12 killed at least 8,832 people and injured more than 22,000.

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