Nineteen people are dead after a small turboprop plane carrying tourists on an hour-long flyby of Mount Everest crashed in Nepal on Sunday. The flight was part of an "Everest Experience" package offered by Buddha Air and carried 16 passengers and 3 crew, all of whom were killed when the plane crashed into a hillside in Bisankunarayan village, just minutes before it was scheduled to land at Kathmandu's international airport. The Beechcraft 1900D successfully completed its flight around Mount Everest but lost contact with air traffic control in dense fog and heavy rain on the return trip; some observers on the ground also reported flames coming from the aircraft just before it went down, suggesting a mechanical failure. The two Americans on board were identified as Andrew Wade and Natalie Neilan. "We were a bit apprehensive because aviation accidents are relatively common [in Nepal]," said a family member of one of the plane's passengers. "But we were assured by the Buddha Air website that describes the Beechcraft as the 'safest plane operating in the domestic sector.'"
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