Russian aircraft carrying parachute jumpers crashes in Tatarstan killing 16
A Russian plane carrying a group of parachute jumpers has crashed after takeoff in central Russia early on Sunday, killing 16 people and injuring six.
Just 70 metres above ground near the city of Menzelinsk, pilots reported a failure of the left engine.
Tatarstan Governor Rustam Minnikhanov said an emergency landing was attempted and while pilots attempt to avoid a nearby residential area, "the altitude didn't allow it".
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The aircraft's wing hit a van upon handing and overturned.
The aircraft was a Let L-410 Turbolet twin-engine short-range transport aircraft, built in 1987 and owned by a government-linked sports and defence organisation, Army, Aviation and Navy, a sports and defence organisation.
The head of the organisation's Menzelinsk branch, Ravil Nurmukhametov told TSS Media that the parachuting club operating the flight was very experienced and had hosted local, European and world championships.
"We are the best, we are among the top five clubs," he said.
The cause of the crash is being investigated by Russian authorities.
The Investigative Committee, which explores serious crimes, said a criminal investigation was opened for a suspected violation of safety regulations.