There are no clear causes for the 7 July crash of a Boeing 727-200Adv freighter that hit hilly terrain 5min after take-off from Kathmandhu, Nepal. The weather was good when the Hinduja Cargo Services aircraft departed at 19:46 local time, bound for New Delhi, India. There was no emergency call to air traffic control.

The aircraft should have reached at least 9,500ft (2,900m), but the impact took place at 7,550ft, according to the aircraft's owners. If an aircraft fails to gain sufficient height on departure from Kathmandhu Airport, located at 6,250ft in a deep valley, the crew usually turns back.

The shattered wreckage of the aircraft (VT-LCI), about 15km (9miles) south of Kathmandhu, indicates a high energy impact. All five crew were killed.

The aircraft was built in 1981, making it one of the youngest 727s. Boeing says it had flown 43,000h and 25,000 cycles, and the owners say it had a C-check last September.

In 1992, there were two fatal controlled flight into terrain crashes at Kathmandhu: a Pakistan International Airlines Airbus A300 crashed into a mountain on descent and a Thai Airways A310-300 hit high ground in a go-around from approach. Since then, navigation aids have been upgraded and a surveillance radar installed.

Source: Flight International