Eighteen killed in Russian helicopter crash in Siberia

Posted August 05, 2018

Eighteen people have died in the crash.

Rescuers were unable to get close to the site.

Among those killed were three members of the crew, with the other 15 believed to have been oil workers.

The helicopter's rotors hit meal pipes which being lifted by another Mi-8, say officials from the site.

Both black boxes of the helicopter were found, a source in regional emergency services was quoted by Sputnik news agency as saying, adding that the recorders were in a satisfactory condition.

The Mi-26 helicopter made an emergency landing and no one was hurt in that aircraft.

The crashed helicopter was carrying 15 passengers and three crew, according to its operator, UTair airlines.

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In a statement issued on its website, Utair said the crash took place at 05:43 Moscow time (0243 GMT) after taking off from a helipad at the Vankor oil and gas field, in the Turuhansk district of the Krasnoyarsk region.

Rescuers "could not approach" the scene due to the extreme heat of flames.

A commission has been set up to investigate the crash.

The helicopter was manufactured in 2010.

"The first take-off was carried out by a Mi-8 with an external cargo suspension without passengers on board, the second take-off was performed with passengers who were workers on shifts at the oil station", the ministry said in a statement, according to AFP.

The probe is likely to focus on pilot error.

The Interstate Aviation Committee, which oversees civil aviation in much of the former Soviet Union, said the Mi-8 helicopter collided with the load being carried by another helicopter.

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