A Russian Antonov An-148 passenger plane has crashed shortly after taking off from Moscow’s Domodedovo airport. Russian officials have confirmed all 71 people on board have died.
Saratov Airlines flight 6W703 was heading to Orsk, a city near Russia’s border with Kazakhstan, when it went down near the town of Argunovo, about 50 miles south-east of Moscow. Witnesses said the plane, an Antonov An-148 aircraft, was in flames as it fell from the sky.
The Russian transport minister was on his way to the crash site, agencies reported. The transport ministry said several causes for the crash were being considered, including weather conditions and human error.
The flight-tracking site Flightradar24 tweeted that the seven-year-old passenger jet had gone into a steep descent five minutes after take-off, after which it had vanished from radars.
The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, expressed his condolences to the families and friends of those who died in the crash and ordered the government to set up a special commission to investigate.
The governor of the Orenburg region, which the plane was flying to, told Russian media more than 60 people on the plane were from the region. Plane crashes are common in Russia lately.
On March 2016, all 62 passengers died when a FlyDubai jet crashed in bad weather during an aborted landing at Rostov-on-Don airport.
A military plane carrying Russia’s Red Army Choir crashed after taking off from the Black Sea resort of Sochi in December 2016, killing all 92 people on board. The military choir had been due to give a concert to Russian troops in Syria.
The Guardian.com / AA Magnum Analyst News 2018.