MOSCOW, Sep 7 (PRIME) — A Yak-42 plane operated by Russian airline Yak Service crashed in the Yaroslavl Region on Wednesday killing 43 people, according to preliminary data, a spokesperson for the regions branch of the Emergency Situations Ministry said, RIA Novosti reported.
The plane had 45 people on board, including eight crew members, and was carrying the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl ice hockey team to the Belarusian capital, Minsk, where it was due to play on Thursday against Dinamo Minsk. German tabloid Bild reported Wednesday that a German citizen had been killed in the crash.
One of the two survivors is hockey player Alexander Galimov and the other is a crew member, the teams General Manager Yury Lukin told agency R-Sport on Wednesday.
The plane crashed at 4:02 p.m. Moscow time straight after take-off and caught fire.
According to preliminary data, the plane took off from the runway but failed to gain the required height and hit an antenna, the Federal Air Transport Agency said, adding that the plane had undergone a standard technical inspection before taking off.
Morover, the ill-fated plane has spent 40% of its operating resource, agency Aviaports Analytical Service Director Oleg Panteleyev said.
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has ordered Transportation Minister Igor Levitin to go to the accident site to organize the investigation, Putins press secretary Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
Furthermore, Vladimir Markin, an official representative of Russias Investigative Committee, said on Wednesday that the committee has opened a criminal case on the crash to investigate possible violations of aircraft transportation security regulations.
Also, Prosecutor General Yury Chaika has ordered Yak Service to be checked and asked the transport agency and the Federal Transport Oversight Service to inspect the condition of all Yak aircraft currently being operated in Russia.
According to preliminary data, the crashed plane was put into operation in 1993.