Forty-one people, including children, were killed Sunday in a fiery airplane accident at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport, a spokeswoman for the Russian Investigative Committee said.
VIDEO — Fire engulfs Aeroflot plane making emergency landing at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport, killing at least 41 people on boardhttps://t.co/s1A3wI8HIT pic.twitter.com/JPvy5r9Ymx— DAILY SABAH (@DailySabah) May 5, 2019
"There were 78 people including crew members on board the plane," the Investigative Committee said in a statement. "According to the updated info which the investigation has as of now, 37 people survived."
Video footage showed desperate passengers leaping out of the Sukhoi SSJ100 operated by national airline Aeroflot onto an inflatable evacuation slide and staggering across the airport's tarmac and grass, some holding luggage.
Image taken from video by Instagram user @artempetrovich (AP)
At least two children were among the passengers who died, the Investigative Committee said.
Another 11 people were injured, Dmitry Matveyev, the Moscow region's health minister, initially said. Three of them had been hospitalized but they were not in a serious condition, he added.
The airport said in a statement that the plane, which had taken off from Sheremetyevo Airport for the northern city of Murmansk, turned back for unspecified technical reasons and made a hard landing that started the fire.
Some news reports cited sources as saying the plane bounced several times during the landing
"Investigators soon will begin interviewing victims, eyewitnesses, airport staff and the airline carrier, as well as other persons responsible for the operation of the aircraft," Investigative Committee spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko said.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry on Monday offered condolences to Russia over the deadly plane accident.
"We received the news of the loss of lives caused by the aircraft accident," that happened at the Sheremetyevo Airport "yesterday evening with great sorrow," the ministry said in a statement.
"We share the sorrow of the people and Government of Russia, convey our condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and wish a speedy recovery to the injured," it added.
The SSJ100, also known as the Superjet, is a two-engine regional jet put into service in 2011 with considerable fanfare as a signal that Russia's troubled aerospace industry was on the rise.
The plane is largely used in Russia as a replacement for outdated Soviet-era aircraft, but also is used by airlines in other countries, including Armenia and Mexico.
This is the second fatal accident involving the plane. In 2012, a demonstration flight in Indonesia struck a mountain, killing all 45 aboard.