At least one person died and several others were wounded after a passenger plane caught fire during an emergency landing at Moscow’s busiest airport, Russian state news agencies said Sunday.
“Based on current information, one person has died and four people need medical attention” after the plane erupted in flames as it tried to land at Sheremetyevo airport, the TASS agency quoted Russian investigators as saying.
Russian television showed huge black columns of smoke towering over the plane. Other videos shared on social media showed the aircraft ablaze as it attempted to land, then passengers leaving by a forward door.
The Interfax agency reported that the plane, a Russian-made Superjet-100, had just taken off from Sheremetyevo on a domestic route when the crew issued a distress signal.
“It attempted an emergency landing but did not succeed the first time, and on the second time the landing gear hit (the ground), then the nose did, and it caught fire,” a source told Interfax.
According to the Ria Novosti news agency, the plane had been headed to the far northwest city of Murmansk in Russia. It said initial indications suggested an electrical fault might have caused the fire while the plane was in the air.
Russian investigators said they had opened a criminal probe into a possible breach of security rules.