At least 10 people are reported to have died on Mount Everest last week, the total death toll from a week alone is higher than that for all of 2018..
It’s reported that climbers are stuck waiting in a death zone for hours for the opportunity to reach the summit, according to NYT.
Climber Nirmal Purja, who took a photo of the crowd, said, “I have had bottlenecks on mountains before but not this many people at such high altitude.”
There are only a certain number of days in the year where conditions are good enough for summit. Climbers can wait for the opportunity for weeks, and then collectively rush to the top.
Climbers have to get to the top and down fast and one screw up by one unqualified person can kill several other people around them.
At least 2 climbers died of exhaustion while forced to wait for hours in the death zone to reach the summit, unable to get up and down fast enough to replenish oxygen supply.
Some were simply not fit enough to be on the mountain in the first place, local Sherpas said.
Nepal’s tourism authority said other factors including adverse weather conditions had also contributed.