Authorities are investigating the cause of a deadly plane crash as fears mount that the 28 passengers currently missing are likely dead.
Russian authorities have dispatched ships to search the sea near the remote Kamchatka Peninsula in the country’s far east for the wreckage of a small aircraft carrying 28 people, including two children and six crew members.
The small Soviet-era plane, an Antonov An-26 turboprop aircraft, belongs to Kamchatka Aviation Enterprise, a local carrier. The plane, which departed from the regional capital Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and was headed over 435 miles away to the town of Palana, was six miles from its destination when authorities lost radio contact.
It is unclear as of yet what may have caused the plane crash, but Russia’s Federal Air Transport Agency is currently investigating. It is possible that the crash was due to bad weather, as the pilot was dealing with intense fog and extremely low visibility. There are also concerns that the plane experienced a malfunction.
The fleet of Russian ships are currently searching the waters near Palana.
“All emergency services have sounded the alarm and have been dispatched to search the route of the plane,” the Kamchatka regional government said in a statement, according to the New York Times.
This is Russia‘s third major commercial aviation disaster in the past three and a half years.
According to Zero Hedge: “In 2018, an An-148 regional jet plunged into a field just after takeoff from Moscow, killing all 71 aboard. In 2019, a Russian-made Sukhoi SSJ-100 jet burst into flames as it touched down on a runway in Moscow, killing 41. It’s also at least the second failure involving a passenger plane flying to Palana from Kamchatka’s main city, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, in recent memory. The last crash occurred in 2012, an An-28 approaching the remote town of about 3K people crashed into a mountainside, killing 10.”