Four Climbers Killed on Mount Everest

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2011 file photo of Mount Everest (Associated Press)

Mount Everest claimed four climbers this weekend, making it one of the deadliest on the mountain in history.

Nepal officials reportedly said four climbers died amid a traffic jam of climbers when it hosted around 200 who were attempting to summit the world’s tallest mountain, which reaches a height of 29,035 feet.

The four climbers included 61-year-old Eberhard Schaaf of Germany, 33-year-old Canadian Shriya Shah-Klorfine, 44-year-old South Korean Song Won-bin and 55-year-old Ha Wenyi of China — all of whom were reportedly victims of altitude sickness and exhaustion.

The deaths can be attributed in part to the massive amount of climbers on the mountain that caused a “traffic jam” effect, leaving many at high altitudes without enough oxygen.

A Nepali mountaineering official told the Associated Press that the traffic jam of climbers Saturday was caused after climbers headed to the summit too late. Officials advise heading to the summit at 11 a.m. latest but many left after 2 p.m. which proves dangerous.

When this happens only a certain amount of people can ascent and descent a section called the Hillary Step, where only one rope is available. Unfortunately, due to the abundance of climbers the section suffered a bottle-neck and many had too little oxygen to hold them, not anticipating the amount of wait time.

While the four have been confirmed dead, there is good news. A Nepalese Sherpa guide that was reported missing this weekend, miraculously reached base camp on Monday.

The deadly day added to the two deaths already on the mountain this season. It follows another, more deadly day in May 1996, when a record eight people died on Everest. The event inspired a few famous books, penned by survivors, and hit movie Everest.

And sadly, the deadly day may not be the last for this, as the same amount of climbers are expected to attempt to climb the mountain this weekend too, according to reports. The climbing season runs from March through late May and this season has proved to be plagued with bad weather, leaving climbers with only a few days to climb.