Six people were killed when a transport helicopter crashed in Far East Russia on Wednesday.
The regional Vostok Airlines Mi-8 helicopter went down in Khabarovsk region during a training mission, Russia’s Investigative Committee said Wednesday. The airline’s senior executive told the state-run TASS news agency that all six of the victims were certified crew members who were on their second test flight.
The Investigative Committee has opened an investigation into safety violations after the crash. Adverse weather, pilot error and technical malfunction are being considered as possible causes.
The Federal Air Transportation Agency, or Rosaviatsia, told TASS that the two black boxes uncovered at the crash site will be handed over to Russia's Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC).
“The helicopter was flying and caught a [communications] tower in fog,” The Siberian Times cited an eyewitness as saying.
“The helicopter crashed in the city at Antennaya street,” the news outlet quoted an unnamed Investigative Committee source as saying.
Thursday has been declared a day of mourning in Khabarovsk, an unnamed regional representative told the state-run RIA Novosti news agency.