Moscow, Russian Federation (AHN) – A passenger plane crashed shortly after take-off in Russia’s oil-producing region Siberia Monday, killing at least 31 out of 43 people on board. Another 12 were seriously injured, Russia’s emergency ministry confirmed.
The incident happened at around 0150 GMT (9:30 p.m. EDT Sunday) when Russia’s Utair-operated ATR-72 twin propeller plane left Roschino airport for Surgut. Shortly afterward, the plane reportedly disappeared from radar and crashed 35 kilometers (21.7 miles) away from the airport.
Rescuers found the plane split into three pieces. According to Emergency Situations Ministry spokeswoman Irina Andrianova, the plane’s cabin was on fire along with other debris when rescue teams arrived.
A rescue helicopter immediately flew injured survivors to a Tyumen hospital.
This is the second disaster since 2010′s tragic air crash that killed Polish President Lech Kaczynski along with 96 others near the Russian city of Smolensk.
Russia’s Investigative Committee’s spokesman said pilot error and mistakes by ground control have been considered as possible reasons of the crash.
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