Nepalese officials will introduce regulations banning inexperienced climbers from attempting Mount Everest.
Only those who can prove that they have scaled mountains higher than 6,500m will be issued with a permit to attempt to reach the 8,838m summit of the world’s highest peak, officials said. Disabled, elderly and very young climbers also face being banned.
“We cannot let everyone go on Everest and die. If they are not physically and mentally fit it will be like a legal suicide,” Tourism Minister Kripasur Sherpa told the Guardian. “Only those who can go on their own will be given permission.”
About 700 people try to climb Everest, which stands about 29,000 feet tall, every year. Eight people died in 2013, but since the first ascent in 1953 the success rate has been about 60 percent, according to mountain climber Alan Arnette's reading of the Himalayan Database. This year saw Everest's deadliest accident ever in the April earthquake that killed 19 people, most of them Sherpa guides, and injured about 60.
Over the years, Everest has attracted many climbers aiming to overcome their disabilities.
Last week, Japanese mountaineer Nobukazu Kuriki, who had previously lost nine fingers to frostbite, abandoned his attempt to climb the mountain.
In 2006, New Zealander Mark Inglis, who had lost both legs to frostbite, became the first double amputee to reach the 8,848m (29,029ft) summit.
Five years earlier, US climber Erik Weihenmayer became the first blind person to reach the top of Everest.
..... Devashree Goenka