Plane crashes while landing in Russia

FlydubaiA passenger plane from Dubai with as many as 55 passengers on board crashed while landing in Russia Saturday morning, and the aircraft broke up, a Russian official said.

The crash happened at an airport in Rostov-on-Don, a spokesperson for the southern regional center of the Russia’s Emergency Situations Ministry said. The crash occurred at around 3:50 a.m. local time (8:50 p.m. Friday ET), the ministry said.

“The crash site is being investigated for survivors,” a spokesperson for the southern regional center of the Emergency Situations Ministry said.

“The plane is broken, debris strewn over the landing strip. A special commission is looking into causes of the incident,” the spokesperson said.

The passenger list indicated 55 passengers were on board, and preliminary information is six crew were aboard, the ministry said.

Flydubai said in a statement that “we are aware of an incident involving our flight FZ981 from Dubai to Rostov On Don” but it was still gathering details.

It was 42 degrees Fahrenheit and raining at the airport Saturday morning. Interfax news agency reported that winds were gusting at around 60 mph at the time of the landing.

“The plane apparently hit the ground at second landing attempt,” Igor Oder, head of the Emergency Situations Ministry, told Interfax.

Rostov-on-Don is a port city off the Sea of Azov, about 75 miles east of the Ukrainian border. (Courtesy NBC News)

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