Plane carrying paratroopers crashed in Russia; there are 16 dead

The accident is believed to be due to a technical failure.

Sixteen people died this Sunday when an L-410 light aircraft crashed, aboard which were flying 21 paratroopers and two crew members, in the town of Menzelinsk, east of the Russian republic of Tatarstan, reported the regional direction of the Russian Emergency Ministry.

“At 9.23 (6.23 GMT) we received the information about the crash of a light plane near the city of Menzelinsk,” declared a representative of the Ministry of Emergencies, quoted by Interfax.

The fire and rescue units, who immediately went to the scene of the accident, managed to contain the flames and extract seven survivors from the aircraft, according to the press service of the Ministry of Emergencies.

Authorities point to a technical failure as the most probable cause of the loss.

The plane, which belonged to a local air club, crashed shortly after taking off just over a kilometer from the airfield, an emergency services representative told TASS.

The L-410 is a Czech-made twin-engine aircraft that can carry up to 19 passengers or 1.8 tons of cargo over distances of up to 1,500 kilometers.

One of its main characteristics is that it can be used in aerodromes with short and land runways.

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