44 Reported Killed in Russian Plane Crash

Posted June 21st, 2011 at 5:50 am (UTC-5)
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Russian officials say 44 people were killed and eight others injured when a passenger plane crashed late Monday in Russia's northern republic of Karelia.

The plane, a Tupolev 134, with 52 people on board was trying to land at Petrozavodsk airport, about 650 kilometers northwest of Moscow, when it crashed on a nearby highway and caught fire.

The survivors were taken to Petrozavodsk hospitals.

Russian news reports quoted officials as saying that bad weather could have been a factor in the accident, but that human error is not ruled out. Heavy fog was reported at the time of the crash.

RIA novosti quoted Karelia's health minister Valentina Ulich as saying that among those killed was a Swedish citizen. The agency also reported that rescuers working at the crash site have found both flight recorders from the aircraft.

The plane was enroute from Moscow's Domodedovo airport to Petrozavodsk when it crashed.