A FlyDubai Boeing 737 jet crashed at the Rostov-on-Don airport early Saturday morning, killing all 62 people aboard.
The passenger jet travelling from Dubai circled the southern Russian airport in high winds and poor visibility then crashed on a second landing attempt.
Officials believe bad weather, which kept the plane from reattempting landing for more than two hours, likely caused the crash. They ruled out terrorism as a possibility.
The jet, scheduled to land at 1:20 a.m. (6:20 p.m. ET) but went down at 3:50 a.m. (8:50 p.m. ET) was carrying 55 passengers and seven crew members when it crashed, Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov said.
About 700 people are involved in the rescue operation, the Ministry of Emergency Situations said. The crash site is 800 feet (243 meters) from the airport runway, it stated.
The plane’s pilot circled the airport, waiting for the weather to clear before making a second attempt to land, but the aircraft’s tail had clipped the runway, it disclosed.
Confirming the crash, the United Arab Emirates-based airline said no one survived.
“Flydubai very much regrets to confirm that the accident involving flight number FZ981 at Rostov-on-Don earlier today has resulted in 55 passenger fatalities including 33 women, 18 men and four children.
“The nationalities of the deceased passengers include 44 Russians, eight Ukrainians, two Indians and one Uzbekistani,” the airline said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed his deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims.
Families of passengers killed will receive one million rubles (about $15,000) from the government, Russian state media reported. It said Sunday has been declared a day of mourning in the Rostov region.
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