Russian fighter jet crashes on test flight, killing two

23rd June 2011, Comments 0 comments

A fighter jet crashed in southern Russia on Thursday during a test flight, killing the two pilots and prompting the defence ministry to suspend the plane from use during an investigation.

The MiG-29 jet flown by experienced pilots went off the radar at around 1645 and crashed in the Astrakhan region around 43 kilometres from the town of Akhtubinsk, the defence ministry said.

The commander in chief of the Russian air force ordered that all fighter jets of the same type be suspended from flying while the causes of the accident were investigated, a defence ministry said.

The fighter jet was being tested prior to being sent to India as part of a contract to supply planes for a Russian-built aircraft carrier due to be completed next year, an aviation industry source told the Interfax news agency.

The crash came less than three days after a Tupolev 134 passenger jet crashed in northern Russia late Monday, killing 45, in an accident that has initially been attributed to pilot error.

© 2011 AFP

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