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Russian jet with 71 people on board crashes after Moscow take-off

Chinadaily / MOSCOW – A plane operated by Saratov Airlines crashed in the Moscow region on Sunday, killing all 71 people on board, Russian news agency Interfax said, citing a source in the emergency services.

A view shows a scene where a short-haul regional Antonov AN-148 crashed after taking off from Moscow’s Domodedovo airport, outside Moscow, Russia Feb 11, 2018.[Photo/Agencies] There were 65 passengers and 6 crew members onboard the plane, RIA reported.

The Antonov An-148 regional jet was en route from Domodedovo Airport in Moscow to the city of Orsk, about 1,500 kilometers southeast of Moscow. It disappeared from radar screens less than 10 minutes after takeoff on Sunday afternoon.

This file photo taken on March 5, 2010 in Hyderabad shows technicians and officials standing beside an Antonov An-148 aircraft on display during The India Aviation 2010 show at Begumpet Airport. [Photo/VCG] “Tentatively, the plane has crashed near the village of Argunovo,” a source in emergency services told Interfax.

“Debris has been found, there are no survivors,” TASS quoted a source as saying.

Footage on state television showed plane fragments strewn across a snowy field with no buildings nearby. It was unclear if there were any casualties among people on the ground at the crash site.

Control panel in the cockpit of an Antonov An 148 flight simulator at S7 Training Centre operated by S7 Airlines. The simulator is used for training pilots and crews. [Photo/VCG] It was not immediately clear what caused the crash. The Russian Transport Ministry was considering various possible reasons, including weather conditions and a pilot error, Interfax said.

The Russian Investigative Committee has opened an investigation into the crash and Russian Transport Minister Maksim Sokolov has flown to the scene.

The last large-scale crash in Russia occurred on Dec 25, 2016, when a Tu-154 operated by the Russian Defense Ministry on its way to Syria crashed into the Black Sea minutes after takeoff from the southern Russian city of Sochi. All 92 people on board were killed.

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