Photo Source: Nirmal Purja for Project Possible

Nepal under international scrutiny after Everest climb death toll reaches 10

Nepal has come under heavy scrutiny after the death toll on the world’s highest peak reached 10 this climbing season alone. The reason for their death is attributed to the heavy waiting line near the summit.

Robin Hayness Fisher (British)

A 41 years-old British climber, Robin Hayness Fisher, died while descending, at 150 meter below the summit shortly after conquering the peak at 8:30 am (local time) on Saturday, said Murari Sharma, Managing Director at Everest Pariwar Treks. His death marks the 10th death on Mt Everest in this season alone.

Dhurba Bista, Mountaineering guide (Nepali)

Reputed national mountaineering guide Dhurba Bisat at Himalayan Ski Treks breathed his last at Mt Everest Base camp on Friday after he was caught with altitude sickness at ‘Camp III’ and evacuated to the base camp, according to officials at the Everest base camp.


Kevin Hyness (Irish)

Father of two, Kevin Hyness from Ireland, passed away in his tent at 7,000 meters during his descent down the mountain on Friday Morning. Mr Hynes was climbing as part of a group from UK-based climbing company, 360 Expeditions. They were attempting the summit from the Northern or Chinese side of the Everest.


Nihal Bagwan , Kalpana Das and Anjali Sharad Kulkarni (Indian)

Three Indian climbers, including two women, were reported to die on Thursday (May 23) while descending after reaching the top.

Nihal Bagwan, 27, from Maharastra, India, died on his return from the summit. According to Babu Sherpa, Managing Director at Peak Promotion Pvt Ltd, said Bagwan breathed his last at Camp IV on the Everest on the Nepal side after he was rescued by a group of Sherpas.

Kalpana Das, 49, from Odisha, India, reached the summit on Thursday Morning and lost her life during her descent in the afternoon of the same day. She was a member of three women expedition.

Indian woman climber named Anjali Sharad Kulkarni, 54, from Mumbai, also died on the same while descending from the summit.


Ing Landgraf (Austria)

Ing Landgraf (Ernst), 65, from Austria died on Thursday (May 23) at the Second Step on Mount Everest while he was on his way back from the summit point of the world’s highest mountain, said Himalaya Vision Pvt Ltd,an organizing group for climbers. He was a part of expedition run by Kobler & Partner from the Tibetan side.

Donald Lynn Cash (American)

American national Donald Lynn Cash, 55, of Utah, US, died on Wednesday (May 22) after collapsing on his descent just below the Hillary Step, said officials at the Everest base camp. Mr Cash had just become a member of the “Seven Summits Club”, having scaled the tallest mountain on each continent.

Seamus Sean Lawless (Irish)

Seamus Sean Lawless, 39, an assistant professor in artificial intelligence at the School of Computer Science and Statistics at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, who fell in an area known as balcony near the mountain’s summit and subsequently went missing on May 16, has been presumed dead. A search for him has been called off by his family so as to prevent the endangerment of others’ lives in his pursuit. Mr. Seamus was a part of eight-member expedition led by reputed Irish climber Noel Richard Hanna.


Ravi Thakar (Indian)

Indian climber Ravi Thakar, another member of ‘eight-member expedition led by Irish climber Hanna’, was found dead inside his tent at Camp IV in the early morning of May 17 (Friday). He had summited the Everest on Thursday morning.


Eight of the total deceased as of now (until this news is published) were climbing the Everest from Nepal side while two climbers – Ing Landgraf (Ernst), Austria and Kevin Hyness, Ireland –were attempting from Chinese side.

All of the deaths were reported to happen in the month of April and May – this time span is considered to be peak climbing season for weather in this time is safer to climb. Nepal government has issued 381 permits – 367 foreigners and 14 Nepalese climbers – this season alone.

The overcrowding and queuing up around the Hillary Step, where climbers have to go in ‘single file’ is attributed for the most of the death this season.  There was a report of two and three hour’s delays in that area because of the traffic. This causes the shortage of oxygen which might result in the altitude sickness and finally death of climbers.

According to Arnette, who tracks Everest activity, the average time needed for the summit is 10 to 12 hours while some climbers have spent more than 15 to 20 hours above the 8,000 meters owing to heavy traffic, wait time and exhaustion.

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