Toll in Russian airliner crash rises to 12

3rd August 2010, Comments 0 comments

The death toll after a Russian regional airliner crashed and exploded while trying to land in eastern Siberia rose to 12 after an injured passenger died in hospital, local authorities said Tuesday.

The An-24 aircraft flying from Krasnoyarsk crashed Monday off the edge of the runway while trying to land at Igarka airport and exploded into a fireball, killing 11 of the 15 people aboard, the emergency situations ministry said.

Later, Interfax news agency quoted a local authority spokesman as saying another passenger, hospitalised in a serious condition, had died early Tuesday.

Three crew members who were pulled alive from the wreckage remained in hospital, the spokesman said. The federal air transport agency earlier said they were suffering from burns and bruising.

Eleven passengers and four crew were on board the turboprop aircraft, capable of carrying up to 44 passengers.

The 11 who died immediately included a child and an air hostess, the spokesman said.

The reason for the crash was not immediately known, but a spokesman for the air transport agency said the plane veered off to the right before crashing around 700 metres (yards) from the runway.

A criminal inquiry had been opened for violation of safety rules causing several deaths, the local prosecutor's office said.

Thick fog may have been behind the accident, according to investigators.

© 2010 AFP

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