A Russian passenger plane crashed outside Moscow on Sunday, killing all 71 people on board, according to Russian media.
Saratov Airlines flight 6W703, an Antonov An-148 plane, had taken off from the Domodedovo airport en route to Orsk, a city in the Urals, when it crashed in the Ramensky district on the outskirts of Moscow.
Russian news agencies reported 65 passengers and six crew were on board. They also quoted witnesses in the village of Argunovo whoe said they had seen a burning plane falling from the sky.
A source from Russia’s emergency services told Interfax that the 71 people on board had no chance of survival. The same news agency reported that the wreckage of the plane was spread over a wide area around the crash site.
Russian state television aired a video of the crash site, showing parts of the wreckage in the snow. Russia has experienced record snowfalls in recent days and visibility was reportedly poor.
The Russian-made plane was seven years old and bought by Saratov from another Russian airline a year ago.
Russian media reported that the emergency services were unable to reach the crash site by road and that rescue workers walked to the scene on foot. Emergency services said in a statement that more than 150 rescue workers had been deployed.
A source at Domodedovo, Moscow’s second largest airport, told agencies that the flight disappeared from radar within two minutes of take off.
The Russian transport minister was on his way to the crash site, agencies reported. The transport ministry said several causes for the crash were being considered, including weather conditions and human error.
The governor of the Orenburg region, which the plane was flying to, told Russian media that more than 60 people on the plane were from the region.
Prosecutors opened an investigation into Saratov Airlines following the crash.
Plane crashes are common in Russia, where airlines often operate ageing aircraft in testing conditions. A light aircraft crashed in November in the far east of the country, killing six people on board.
A military plane carrying Russia’s famed Red Army Choir crashed after taking off from the Black Sea resort of Sochi in December 2016, killing all 92 people on board. The choir had been due to give a concert to Russian troops operating in Syria. Pilot error was blamed for the crash.
In March 2016, all 62 passengers died when a FlyDubai jet crashed in bad weather during an aborted landing at Rostov-on-Don airport.