MOSCOW, August 8 (Itar-Tass) —— According to specified reports from the Russian Health and Social Development Ministry fifteen people were injured after their plane made a rough landing in Blagoveshchensk. “Fifteen people were injured in an incident when the Antonov-24 plane overshot the runway in Blagoveshchensk. Seven people, including a woman and a child, were hospitalized,” the ministry said on its official website.
No assistance from the federal health service bodies is required at present. The ministry has brought the situation in respect to medical assistance to the victims under control, the ministry said.
The plane performed a flight from Irkutsk to Khabarovsk with stopovers in Chita and Blagoveshchensk. Preliminary reports said that because of poor visibility and a strong wind the plane departed from the assigned trajectory and missed the runway when landing. The plane touched down 200 meters off the runway in a forest zone.
The plane itself was heavily damaged; its left wing was torn off, the right wing was broken and the undercarriage was damaged. A fuel leak has been reported , but there was no fire because a heavy rain continued in the area of the airport. “It was a miracle that the people survived,” onlookers said.
Fire fighting brigades, rescuers and ambulance brigades arrived on the scene. The survivors were consulted by psychologists. Amur regional Governor Oleg Kozhemyako visited the scene of the catastrophe. Deputy Chairman of the Amur regional government Konstantin Chmarov was put in charge of a special commission that is investigating the circumstances of the incident.
The Head department of the Ministry for Emergency Situations of the Amur region has opened a telephone Help Line to provide information about the passengers and crew. The number is / 4162/ 53-99-99.
Another plane Antonov-24 has been sent from Irkutsk to Blagoveshchensk to take the survivors booked for Khabarovsk to the destination.