18 killed in Siberian helicopter crash: Russian airline

by Garry Watts August 5, 2018, 4:07
18 killed in Siberian helicopter crash: Russian airline

A Russian airline helicopter has crashed shortly take-off killing 18 people.

In Russia, the helicopter operator predominantly works with oil and gas companies, transporting people and cargo for clients including Gazprom, Shell and Rosneft.

"Both flight recorders have been found", he said.

A well-informed official in the law enforcement agencies told TASS the helicopter had taken off from the town of Igarka, located on the River Yenisei to the north of the Arctic Circle.

Russian air safety has improved since the 1990s, when poor aircraft maintenance, pilot training and official oversight in the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union resulted in a high number of crashes. The helicopter flew 2 kilometre before it crashed. "According to preliminary information, the Mi-8 carrying passengers, for reasons unknown, collided with the external suspension of the second helicopter after take-off". A criminal investigation is under way. Meanwhile, black boxes from the Mi-8 have already been retrieved from the crash site, but their condition is yet unclear.

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The helicopter with cargo landed safely after the crew dropped the external suspension, it added.

The Mi-8, flying at an altitude of about 328 feet, hooked rotor blades with the cargo of a Mi-26 helicopter of the same company flying nearby before the crash, a report on Investigative Committee's website said.

In November 2017, six people died when a small plane crash-landed in the Khabarovsk region.

The airline said it sent its specialists to the site of the crash.

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