x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

Crew only survivors of Siberian plane crash

The death toll after a Russian regional airliner crashes and explodes while trying to land in eastern Siberia rises to 12.

The death toll after a Russian regional airliner crashed and exploded while trying to land in eastern Siberia rose to 12 after an injured passenger died in hospital, local authorities said today. The An-24 aircraft flying from Krasnoyarsk crashed yesterday off the edge of the runway while trying to land at Igarka airport and exploded into a fireball, killing 11 of the 15 people aboard, the emergency situations ministry said. Later, Interfax news agency quoted a local authority spokesman as saying another passenger, hospitalised in a serious condition, had died early today. Three crew members who were pulled alive from the wreckage remained in hospital, the spokesman said. The federal air transport agency earlier said they were suffering from burns and bruising. Eleven passengers and four crew were on board the turboprop aircraft, capable of carrying up to 44 passengers. The 11 who died immediately included a child and an air hostess, the spokesman said. The reason for the crash was not immediately known, but a spokesman for the air transport agency said the plane veered off to the right before crashing about 700 metres from the runway. A criminal inquiry had been opened for violation of safety rules causing several deaths, the local prosecutor's office said. Thick fog may have been behind the accident, according to investigators. * AFP