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Black Box Found, Investigation into the Russia Plane Crash Underway

(CRI Online)    09:21, March 20, 2016

Rescuers work at the crash site of the Boeing 737-800 Flight FZ981 operated by Dubai-based budget carrier Flydubai, at the airport of Rostov-On-Don, Russia, on March 19, 2016. [Photo: Xinhua/RIA Novosti]

Officials and investigators are looking into the cause of a recent crash of a passenger jet at Russia's Rostov-on-Don early Saturday morning.

People continued to gather at the airport in Rostov-on-Don on Saturday to lay flowers in memory of passengers who were on board a Dubai airliner that crashed in southern Russia, killing all 62 on board.

Russia's Investigative Committee spokesperson Oksana Kovrizhnaya told a press conference there that they are looking at a couple of possible causes of the crash.

"The investigation is currently looking into two main versions for the plane crash - a mistake by the pilot due to the harsh weather conditions or a malfunction in the plane."

Kovrizhnaya said they have found two flight recorders and sent them to specialists for deciphering.

The remains of bodies have also been sent for identification tests.

A Boeing 737-800, operated by Dubai-based budget carrier FlyDubai, nosedived while trying to land in strong winds for the second time in the southern Russian city.

Most of the victims were Russian.

After visiting the crash site, Alexander Neradko, head of the Russian state civil aviation agency Rosaviatsiya, said traffic controllers should not be blamed for the crash.

"According to international aviation law, air traffic controllers regulate who takes off and who lands. And the aircraft's captain brings to bear his own experience, his own preparedness. The rules of any particular air company are not necessarily known to the air traffic controller. Therefore, our air traffic controllers were acting in full accordance with international rules and there is no reason to talk about any flaws in their work."

Russian Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov said the airport will re-open after the work of the investigation team is completed.

"After the arrival of specialists from the inter-governmental aviation committee, and following the work of the investigative committee, we can begin the clean-up of the runway at the Rostov-on-Don airport and (work towards) the restoration of (the airport to) its original layout and the possibility of (flights) landing (resuming) - but this will take about 10 hours."

It is said that several planes had trouble landing at the airport at the time of the crash, with one trying to land three times before giving up and diverting to another airport.

According to the independent U.S.-based Flight Safety Foundation, there was strong wind at the airport with a speed of 43 kilometres per hour, with gusts up to 69 kilometres, but visibility was reasonable.


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(Editor:Ma Xiaochun,Bianji)

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