A Call to Make Everest Safer
The mountaineers have called on the Nepal government to make Everest safer by reducing the congestion on the route to the top and by examining competence and capability of each and every climber. Six mountaineers lost their lives on the mountain with at least some of the deaths attributed to delays in climbing the mountain from the southern side because of congestion on the narrow southeast ridge. “There should be someone from the Nepal government at Base Camp that will take care of you, or check if someone without climbing experience but lots of money has a permit,” said Australian climber Jaco Ottink, originally from Netherlands, who got to the summit on 13 May.
Ottink also condemned some expedition agencies for risking the lives of guides and climbers. “There are a couple of organisations that should not be there because they don’t follow the rules and send people up with 35-40 kg on their backs,” Ottink added, “if there is an avalanche, try to run with 40 kg backpack with a rope around your hips, it’s impossible.”
As per the rule, porters and guides are not allowed to climb with more than 17 kg. The overloading of backpacks that was up to 30 kg made it impossible for them to escape the tumbling ice. This year, helicopters ferried mountaineering gear up to the top of the icefall, which meant that nearly 90 porters did not have to negotiate the dangerous icefall.
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