View Full Version : Royal Nepal Blues !

6th Dec 2003, 16:49
Since last 2 months, series of incidents have been taking place with Royal Nepal Airlines’ Two aging B-757 due to poor maintenance and corruption. Safety of passengers and on time departure and arrivals are a thing of the past. Here are some of the ones which made it to the headlines of local papers....

1. Right after take off from KTM for HKG (Oct 9 2003) all the IRU’s failed. The aircraft was released on MEL, because the center IRU was not functioning. Just after take off the remaining two failed. The crew declared an emergency and landed back in KTM with the guidance from KTM Approach Radar . The crew are still grounded by the F/O operations director. The commander was Instructor (b-757)/ex operations director who happens to be the number one in the seniority list of the flag carrier. The reason for grounding the crews !?! the F/O operations Director (who is number 27th in the seniority list) and his close associate, dy. director flight operations international sector ‘the drunk pilot’ have dislikes for the commander.
2. Another B-757 has been doing normal flights with flap disagree problems. Most of the time with only 20 flaps none of the crew are grounded because for RNAC pilots and management it has become a normal practice to fly that way.
3. Last month, after experiencing in-flight severe hydraulics leakage, the F/O operations Director brought the aircraft (bound for KUL) all the way back from over head Burma without even declaring emergency. For two days the aircraft was grounded at KTM and the passengers were kept in local hotel. The SOP (yes RA does have one) says land at the nearest airport but the crew did not follow it, Because it was the F/O operations Director who was involved, he wouldn’t ground himself or the PIC.
4. One of the B-757 has been operating with extremely for more than 3 months.
5. Another B-757 got grounded in Shangai foe 5 full days due to another hydraulics leakage problem.
6. While on a flight from Delhi to Katmandu while making an approach in Katmandu, the flaps disagree message came up and the crew were not able to get flaps down ( not even 5 degrees). the crew diverted to Delhi. no emergency was declared. The crew were not grounded. Later, after 2 days the same crew ferried the Aircraft to Katmandu leaving the poor passengers on ground Delhi. The PIC was previously involved in the severe in-flight hydraulics leakage case. But because the operations director has soft corner for this commander, the crew were not grounded.
7. Some where near Dacca ( Bangladesh) one of the B-757’s cockpit windshield crack. The crew didn’t declare any emergency and decided to bring the aircraft all the way to KTM. the crew were not grounded for not declaring emergency because the commander was the same person, involved in severe hydraulics incident and there after complete flap failure incident.
8. One of the flag carriers DHC-6 has a bird strike in western Nepal while making an approach in Nepalgunj.
9. While departing HKG for KTM the crew were asked by the HKG tower if they are RVSM equipped. The crew lied and answered yes ( hurrying to get back home). Near over CCU the aircraft had a near miss (which was not reported), but landed in KTM. The crew were not grounded because the PIC happened to be the Dy. Director of Operations Engineering & planning working under the F/O operations director and a close associate of ‘the drunk pilot’. After two days a complain from HKG authorities pops up in Local civil Aviation through Indian Civil Aviation authorities. The management are forced to ground the crews. however, it looks like ‘the liars’ will be released pretty soon much before the crew of the failed IRS aircraft.
10. 2 Days back the flag carrier’s DHC-6 takes off from Biratnagar on a domestic flight to Katmandu with full passengers and lands in Katmandu. Anything unusual about it ? you bet. The aircraft was flying on an expired AOC.

Besides these major incidents, other many problems that occurred within last 2 months never made it to the press because the Flag carriers’ management started hiding the facts. The local aviation authority, the flag carriers management , under the direct order from the present tourism minister ( who happens to be the F/O operations directors relative), have their eyes, ears and mouth closed about all these incidents.

As a fellow PPRUNE says........when professionals are ruled by the unprofessionals....

Getting scary isn’t it ?


please read point no. 4 as this

"4. One of the B-757 has been operating with extremely high EGT for more than 3 months and due to that is has a load penalty of 4 tons."


...one last point........ about 2 weeks back while making an approach in KTM from Delhi the B757 almost landed on a road 3 miles west of the KTM airport. After the tower remined the crew of their position the aircraft made a missed approach and shot another approach. The reason ? entering wrong co-ordinates !?! opsss!!
The crew were not even questioned.

6th Dec 2003, 21:30
Who currently maintains the B757's ?

7th Dec 2003, 17:02
The 757's are maintained by Royal Brunai Air (RBA).

7th Dec 2003, 20:53
What's so special about point 8 ?!?

8. One of the flag carriers DHC-6 has a bird strike in western Nepal while making an approach in Nepalgunj.

7th Dec 2003, 22:29
Maybe the type of bird?

8th Dec 2003, 02:50

Tks for pointing out these important facts about RNAC.

I also believe that not only RNAC is in bad shape in what concerns safe flight operations in domestic civil aviation. If you look on the safety record of Nepal on www.aviation-safety.net, you realise that there is a serious concern on CFIT and overloading. Very bad flight preparation, weather reporting, documentation etc all these combined with adverse climate, high mountains, lack of nav-aids and a very bad functionning CAA with quite some corruption. On top of that, there is a civil war and I don't think the Maoist, nor the Kingdom has a priority in allowing safe domestic operations.
I heard about a Nepalese pilot (mountain pilot) that got hired by a Swiss PC-6 operator. There were surprised how this guy could fly VFR, but as soon in VMC, he was lost, even with a GPS, it was the first time he saw one.... gives you an hint .... don't give a sherpa a GPS, he will not find the Everest with it.


8th Dec 2003, 12:11
Nothing Special about the point no. 8. ;)

8th Dec 2003, 14:41
Himalaya, your litany of maintenance related woes is worrying but your second posting regarding maintenance provision may give the wrong impression. Surely RBA only perform "C" checks at BWN? They are not responsible for line maintenance or "A" checks carried out @ KTM.

8th Dec 2003, 14:58

Thanks for correcting me. RBA does only the "C" checks at BWN and "A" checks & line maintainance at base are done by RNAC itsself. There are two RBA engineers working with RNAC on contract since last few years.

10th Dec 2003, 10:46

did the PC-6 Mountain pilot got killed due to CFIT?

10th Dec 2003, 22:05

Not him, but others in Nepal.

Look at : http://aviation-safety.net/events/RECM.shtml

and check the Nepal CFIT...Shangri-La, Skyline, PIA, Thai Airways.
Mountains are higher than anywhere else

16th Dec 2003, 17:32
The latest incident that has taken place is one of the (two) B-757 9n-ACA is hit by a catering truck on 15th Dec. It made quiet a big hole. The aircraft is grounded until further notice.........! RNAC, the flag carrier of Nepal has only one Jet flying now..!:(

17th Dec 2003, 01:13

I think it is not wise to fly in the himalayas solely relying on gps, specially in marginal wx. I believe some of the cfit in Nepal may have been caused by relying on gps alone. By the way would you mind telling the difference between VFR and VMC ?

I fly 747-400 and have three GPS on board but dont know how it looks, never seen visually.

20th Feb 2004, 11:36
1. 9N-ACA B-757 had its nose wheel axle or whatever you call it bent during "arriving" in Shangai and the aircraft was grounded for more than 16 days...although it hasn't been fixed up properly, the aircraft was farried back to KTM somehow..dont know how they will get it fixed, according to Boeing, it a rare case.

2. 9N-ACB B757 had an engine changed and got a newly overhauled engine recently. The problem is the new engine has been acting up..meaning to say the EGT fluctuates from Max to 0 in flight. Even then the aircraft is still flying.

Hats off to the Royal Nepal management......
Hats off to the Royal Nepal maintainance people....
Hats off to the Royal Nepal Pilots.........

Need we say more ?

Amen !

20th Feb 2004, 14:30
himalaya seems to be waving the 'danger' flag on a regular basis....an axe to grind perhaps?:ooh: :E

20th Feb 2004, 18:34
......and does "COSCAP & ICAO" exist in this part of the world ? I doubt it (may be just in papers). Its so sad and scary to see the way Royal Nepal is flying its passengers.

mr Q
20th Feb 2004, 21:41
Was considering flying Royal Nepal in the near future and have seen their 757 at HKG from time to time............perhaps now I will settle for a less exotic destination with good old reliable CX....and what's wrong with Cebu or Manila for a few days R and R ??????