NEPAL              -          Veteran climbers of Mount Everest are skeptical that proposed new regulations by the Nepalese government to tighten the permit process for adventurers will address the root causes of this year’s heavy death toll on the world’s tallest peak.

American mountaineers Ed Viesturs and Alan Arnette said planned new laws - if they are introduced at all - are unlikely to tackle the growing trend of inexperienced climbers rushing in packs to scale the 29,035-foot (8,850-metre) Himalayan peak.

“I’ve seen this movie so many times it’s totally predictable,” Arnette told Reuters in a telephone interview on Tuesday. “Every year since 2013, something goes wrong and they (the Nepal government) announce all these new rules and never implement them.”

Eleven climbers died on Mount Everest this year - nine on the Nepali side and two on the Tibetan side. Many perished when a rush to climb the mountain during a short window of suitable weather in late May led to a “traffic jam” near the summit. “Most teams opt to go for the summit when the first weather window is predicted,” Viesturs told Reuters in one of a series of interviews by phone and email.

“Everyone is afraid of missing what might be the one and only perfect day. There are typically several good summit days, but there’s pressure to go when everyone else goes.” Nepal has traditionally issued climbing permits to anyone prepared to pay the $11,000 fee, handing out a record 381 passes this year. With essential Sherpas and guides added, more than 800 people were trying to reach the summit during the short weather window.