MOSCOW, November 18, 0:57 /ITAR-TASS/. Passengers who arrived in Moscow from Kazan Sunday afternoon aboard the Boeing 737 jet, which crashed several hours later on a return flight while landing in Kazan airport, told the Rossiya’24 television channel the misfortunate jet was in a very poor technical condition.
One of the passengers, Grigory Busarev, recalled the seats that would not recline and the meal tables that did not unfold.
“Still, the most horrifying things began during the landing,” he said. “It was bucketed from side to side as if it’d fallen into an air hole. I personally don’t remember anything of this kind.”
He admitted however that the jet looked fairly normal from the outside.
A source at the Federal Service for Civil Aviation told Itar-Tass earlier that the jet had a proper technical status at the moment of takeoff on the return flight from Domodedovo airport. He also said no inconsistencies had been found in the samples of fuel taken at the airport and its technical services had not received any complaints over the quality of fuel from other crews or airlines.
The Boeing 737 that was operated by the regional airline Tatarstan lost altitude and hit the runway at 19:26 Moscow Standard Time while crew was making a second attempt to land in Kazan airport after a go-around.
The jet’s fuel tanks exploded upon impact, thus causing fire that was extinguished fairly quickly.
The jet had forty-four passengers and six crewmembers aboard. None of them survived.
EMERCOM officials also said there were two children aged eleven and fifteen years old among the passengers.
Government officials in Kazan told reporters the list of the victims contained the names of Irek Minnikhanov, the son of regional President Rustam Minnikhanov, and the chief of the regional branch of the Federal Security Service /FSB/, Alexander Antonov.