Three Dead in Fire at Nirmal Purja’s Elite Exped Office in Kathmandu

A  major fire last night destroyed a building in Kathmandu that housed the Elite Exped offices, co-owned by Nirmal Purja and Mingma David Sherpa. Tragically, three people have been confirmed dead, and there are an unidentified number of injured people.

“Many gas cylinders were stored in the ground floor office of the trekking company for upcoming expeditions,” The Himalayan Times reported.

They have not mentioned the cause of the fire, but the gas canisters might have made it worse.

“A number of citizens close to the site reported hearing loud blasts repeatedly and feeling the earth shake,” Everest Chronicle reported. “It took six fire engines and three dozen firefighters well over three hours to control the fire.”

Firefighters assess this as one of the worst fires in Nepal’s capital this year.

a charred, three-storey building.

The remains of Elite Exped’s headquarters in Kathmandu. Photo: Everest Chronicle


As Everest Chronicle noted, incidents related to exploding gas canisters are common in Nepal. Outfitters usually store fuel and oxygen canisters in their buildings, as well as mountaineering gear.

The building was located at Budhanilkantha -10 in Kapan, Kathmandu, and it was not Elite Exped’s property. It is not known whether other parts of the building were leased to other companies or individuals.

Angela Benavides

Angela Benavides graduated university in journalism and specializes in high-altitude mountaineering and expedition news. She has been writing about climbing and mountaineering, adventure and outdoor sports for 20+ years.

Prior to that, Angela Benavides spent time at/worked at a number of local and international media. She is also experienced in outdoor-sport consultancy for sponsoring corporations, press manager and communication executive, and a published author.