MOSCOW, August 10 (Itar-Tass) — All the eleven people on board the An-12 plane that met with an accident in the Magadan Region on Tuesday, have died, aide to the head of the Rosaviatsiya Federal Air Transport Agency Sergei Izvolsky told Itar-Tass.
“The plane was detected by a Mi-8 helicopter of civil aviation. The An-12 fragments are scattered over a 2-kilometer area. There were no survivors,” he said.
The plane was found 70 kilometers southwest of the village of Omsukchan, whereas its beacon’s signal was detected 50 kilometers away.
The An-12 of the Khabarovsk-based airline “Avis-Amur” was flying from Komsomolsk-on-Amur to the Chukchi village of Keperveyem on Tuesday, August 9, when it met with an accident.
There were six crew, two technicians from Komsomolsk-on-Amur, an instructor who was a Sakhalin resident, and two residents of the Chukot Autonomous Area watching a commercial cargo.
After refueling and taking off from Magadan, the pilot reported to traffic control a fuel leak as the plane was flying near the Juliet gold mine, and that the engine was on fire. Shortly thereafter, the contact was lost and the plane disappeared from radar screens.
The emergency beacon briefly transmitted a signal at a location some 560 kilometers from Magadan but the signal soon stopped.
Poor weather conditions and darkness complicated the rescue operation.
Criminal proceedings were opened under Article 263, Part 3 of Russia’s Criminal Code (“violation of safety flying regulations”).
The crashed plane (serial number as RA-11125) was manufactured at the Tashkent aircraft making plant named after V.Chkalov almost 50 years ago. It took off for its maiden flight in 1963. “Avis-Amur” had a contract of lease on the plane.
A commission of the Rostransnadzor Federal Service for Supervision of Transport began a check into compliance with Russian legislation during flight preparations.
The investigators believe that the probable causes of the tragedy might be a technical failure or pilot’s error related to violation of flight safety regulation and operation of aircraft, a representative of the Investigative Committee (SK) said.
Latest reports said Emergency Situations Ministry rescuers have arrived at the crash scene.
“At 12:50, Moscow time, Emergency Situations Ministry personnel arrived at the location where the missing liner was detected during aerial surveillance,” an emergency official said.
Meanwhile, the Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) set up a commission to probe the cause of the accident. It will be led by Vitaly Pestov, IAC deputy chairman Oleg Yermolov told Itar-Tass on Wednesday.
“All preliminary work for the field probe stage has already been completed. We have been waiting for confirmation of the fact of the plane crash,” Yermolov said.
The field probe phase is important in the investigation, as the layout of plane fragments might indicate whether the plane disintegrated in mid air or ground collision.