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UTair suspends ATR-72 plane after deadly crash

(Xinhua)

13:17, April 04, 2012

MOSCOW, April 3 (Xinhua) -- Russia's UTair airline has suspended flights of ATR-72 aircraft after a deadly plane crash on Monday that killed 31 people on board a same type of plane, the airline said Tuesday.

UTair, operator of the crashed plane, told RIA Novosti that the company's two turboprop ATR-72 planes left wouldn't resume flights until the end of an investigation into the crash.

"There are no doubts in the plane's airworthiness as of today. The decision was made from the psychological standpoint," UTair said.

The French-Italian-made ATR-72 passenger plane, carrying 39 passengers and four crew members, crashed Monday shortly after it took off from the Siberian city of Tyumen.

The 12 injured were still in critical condition and one of them has been taken to a Moscow hospital for treatment.

Meanwhile, the Interstate Aviation Committee (MAK) said engines of the crashed ATR-72 plane had worked until the final moment of the flight.

Federal Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin also said no alcohol was found in the blood of the pilots.

The ATR-72, built by the French-Italian aircraft manufacturer ATR, is a passenger twin-engine turboprop medium-haul airliner, which is designed for the transportation of 74 passengers at medium distances and steered by two pilots.

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