Russian Investigators Study Crashed Plane's Flight Recorders

Posted February 16, 2018

Investigators scoured the scene on Monday after a passenger plane crashed near Moscow minutes after take-off, killing all 71 people on board, in one of Russia's worst-ever plane crashes. The Investigative Committee of Russian Federation said officials have launched a criminal investigation, as all possible causes are being explored.

The ministry added that it would today lift the main plane debris out of the crater formed upon impact. A day of mourning has been declared in Orenburg, the region where numerous passengers were from, and where Orsk is located.

The Antonov An-148 aircraft was carrying 65 passengers and six crew members, the Russian news agency Interfax said.

The jet, which was reportedly seven years old, was being flown by an experienced pilot who had 5000 hours of flying time.

Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich told a Cabinet meeting that emergency teams have found both flight data and cockpit voice recorders, key to determining the cause of the crash.

Ilya Stavsky, 33, thought that his vision meant that he would be arrested at his birthday party, so he boarded the An-148 plane happily.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the creation of a special commission to investigate the crash.

The plane took off from Domodedovo Airport in Moscow and was en route to Orsk.

Russian investigators say a domestic airliner that crashed on Sunday exploded after it hit the ground.

Domestic carrier Saratov Airlines, which operated the An-148 flight, has said it will suspend usage of the type of plane involved.

Emergency vehicles at the site of the crash in the evening after it happened. The probe into that crash is still ongoing, but officials indicated that a pilot error appeared to be the reason.