16 killed as plane carrying parachutists crashes in Russia
A plane carrying parachutists crashed in the Tatarstan region of Russia on Sunday. The tragic accident is said to have killed 16 people and injured six others, according to the Emergencies Ministry. The Let L-410 Turbolet twin-engine short-range transport aircraft reportedly crashed near the city of Menzelinsky. Visuals from the crash showed the aircraft snapped in half. Here are more details.
The Ministry said that the plane carrying 22 people (including two crew members) crashed around 9:23 am local time (0623 GMT) while flying over Tatarstan. "Six people were rescued, 16 were taken out without signs of life," it said. Earlier, the Ministry had said that 15 people had been killed out of the 23 people aboard the aircraft.
Officials further said that the six survivors were in a serious condition and are being hospitalized. According to a statement on the website of Tatarstan head Rustam Minnikhanov, he was also rushing to the site of the plane crash.
The plane reportedly belonged to the Voluntary Society for Assistance to the Army, Aviation, and Navy of Russia. The head of the society's regional branch, Ravil Nurmekhametov, said the club was not to be blamed for the crash. "We are the best, we are among the top five clubs," Nurmekhametov told the TASS news agency, "Cosmonauts train here."
This year alone, two L-410 planes have crashed fatally, causing the deaths of eight people combined. Notably, Russia used to be infamous for plane accidents, however, the country has worked to improve air traffic safety in recent years. Regardless, frequent accidents continue to take place in remote regions due to poor maintenance of planes and lax safety standards.