Fatalities mount as climbing season in Nepal draws to a close

World Today

It’s a deadly year on the ‘roof of the world.’ The fatalities mount on Mount Everest, as a record number of climbers try to reach the summit. CGTN’s Toby Muse has more.

British climber Robin Haynes Fisher, in his early 40s, achieved his dream of summiting Mount Everest, the highest mountain on earth. But on his descent Saturday, he suddenly took ill, collapsing. Dying shortly after, he was just 150 meters from the summit.

Everest is proving especially deadly this year. Ten people have died so far… from Nepal, India, Austria, Ireland, the U.S. and the UK. Across Nepal’s full Himalayan range, the death toll is 18.

A Chinese crew rescued an Australian climber who ran in to trouble summiting the Tibetan side of Everest, known locally as Mount Qomolangma.

A record number of climbers could make a dangerous ascent, fatal. Nepal has issued 381 permits to climb this season, when the weather is calmer. At least 140 others have permits to scale the mountain from Tibet. But more storms this year have cut the number of days available to summit, causing bottlenecks to the top. As they wait, climbers suffer longer the so-called “death zone,” where a lack of oxygen can lead to suffocation.

With most climbers escorted by guides, a record number of people are expected to summit Everest this season, breaking the previous record of 807 people, set just last year.