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Flight recorder boxes found at Ka-52 crash scene

March 13, 2012, 14:20 UTC+3

The Ka-52 was assigned to the Torzhok-based combat use and crew retraining centre

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MOSCOW, March 13 (Itar-Tass) — An Air Force representative said on Tuesday the flight data recorders have been found at the scene of crash of the military helicopter Ka-52.

"The so-called ‘black boxes’ were found during an inspection of the scene of crash," Air Force spokesman Vladimir Drik told Itar-Tass on Tuesday, "they are in good condition. Military experts have begun to analyze the recorded data."

"Two our officers were killed in the Ka-52 crash. One pilot died immediately. There was hope that the second pilot had survived. But he died, too. Air Force chief Col-Gen Alexander Zelin arrived at the crash scene," Drik underlined.

"According to preliminary information, the helicopter was on a scheduled training flight. Radio contact with the crew was lost at around 21:00, Moscow time, on Monday. After dawn-break today, the crashed helicopter was found 2 kilometers northwest from the village of Malaya Kisilenka, Tver region. Specialists are now examining the scene of crash," an official at the Main Military Investigation Department /GVSU/ told Itar-Tass.

Earlier, spokesman for the Defence Ministry Igor Konashenkov reported that the K-52 navigator had been killed in the crash and that medical assistance was being provided to the second crewmember.

The Ka-52 was assigned to the Torzhok-based combat use and crew retraining centre. It did not have ammunition on board.

Ka-52 /Alligator/ is a multi-role helicopter gunship, intended for aerial reconnaissance, target designation and coordination of helicopters' actions in battlefield.

Alligator is capable of destroying armored vehicles, manpower and aerial targets. Its speed is over 300 kilometers per hour. It has a range of over 1,000 kilometers and an ascension rate of more than ten meters per second.

Russia launched production of Ka-52 helicopters at the Progress plant in Komsomolsk-on-Amur in 2009. The first four Alligators were supplied to the Torzhok combat use and crew retraining centre in February 2011.

The 2012 state defence procurements envision the purchase of 30 Ka-52s. Ten Alligators have already been manufactured.

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