Russian Airliner Crash Kills 50
A Tatarstan Airlines Boeing 737 operated for Ak Bars Aero crashed in Kazan, the capital city of Tatarstan Sunday, killing all 44 passengers and six crew. Early reports out of Russia said the airliner, on a flight from Moscow, attempted to land two or three times and crashed on the final attempt. Weather was reported as light rain with winds about 20 mph, gusting to 30 with six miles of visibility. Russian government officials issued a statement saying the aircraft "hit the runway and burst into flames." Kazan is about 450 miles east of Moscow.
An unidentified journalist was quoted as saying she had flown on the same aircraft to Moscow earlier in the day and believed the plane had some kind of technical issue on landing in Moscow, but that report has not been confirmed. Tatarstan Airlines operates a relatively modern fleet. The aircraft involved was one of two 500-series Boeings and it also has a 400 and a 300, along with two A319s. The airline has been operating for 20 years and this was its first fatal accident. It was also the first fatal airline crash in Russia in 2013.