Flydubai plane crash: All 62 people on board killed, company CEO says pilots were ‘quite experienced’

Russia: A Flydubai plane crashed in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don killing all passengers on board.

By: Agencies | Updated: March 19, 2016 9:23 pm
FlyDubai, Fly Dubai plane crash, Russia plane crash, FlyDubai plane crash, Russia plane crash, Russia Fly Dubai plane crash, Russia crash, plane crash russia, Fly Dubai plane, Russia news, World news Flydubai crash: The plane hit the ground a few hundred metres (yards) from the runaway as it was making its second attempt to land in poor visibility, Russian news channel LifeNews reported.

All sixty-two people on board a Flydubai Boeing 737 were killed when the plane crashed and burst into flames as it was landing in Rostov-on-Don, in Southern Russia, on Saturday morning, officials said. The Ministry of External Affairs has confirmed that two of the dead are Indian, a couple from Kerala.

“A Boeing 737 crashed as it was coming into land. There were 62 people on board. They are all dead,” said a spokesman from the local ministry, quoted by the official TASS news agency.

There were 55 passengers and six crew members on the plane, the official added. The dead Indians have been identified as Mohan Shyam and his wife Anju from Perumbavoor in Kerala.

READ: Young couple from Kerala among 62 killed in southern Russia

The accident happened at 0050 GMT, according to an official statement from the emergencies ministry.

Russia, Fly Dubai, Fly Dubai plane crash, Russia plane crash, Russia Fly Dubai plane crash, Russia crash, plane crash russia, Fly Dubai plane, Russia news, World news A Russian Emergency Situations Ministry employee, left, tries to comfort a relative of the plane crash victims at the Rostov-on-Don airport, about 950 kilometers (600 miles) south of Moscow, Russia Saturday, March 19, 2016. (Source: AP)

“The Boeing 737 on the Dubai to Rostov-on-Don route caught fire (after crashing),” said the statement, adding that it took an hour to bring the fire under control.

The plane hit the ground a few hundred metres (yards) from the runaway as it was making its second attempt to land in poor visibility, Russian news channel LifeNews reported.

Here are the highlights:

8:30 pm: He told a news conference in Dubai that the Cypriot pilot and Spanish co-pilot each had nearly 6,000 hours of flying experience.

7:06 pm: Flydubai played down the possibility that terrorism caused the crash of one of its airliners in Russia today, killing all 62 people on board. The Dubai-based airline’s chief executive Ghaith al-Ghaith described such a suggestion as “speculation”.

5:59 pm: The Dubai Media Office says those killed in the crash of the FlyDubai airliner in Russia include 44 Russians, eight Ukrainians, two Indians and one person from Uzbekistan.

5:55 pm: The pilot and co-pilot had 5,965 and 5,769 hours of flying time respectively, making them “quite experienced,” al-Ghaith said. They were not identified by name.

5:50 pm: FlyDubai Chief Executive Ghaith al-Ghaith says the crew included five men and two women. The pilots were from Cyprus and Spain, while the cabin crew included two Russians and citizens of Seychelles, Colombia and Kyrgyzstan.

5:31 pm: “I offer my condolences to the families of the passengers who lost their lives on board flight FZ981. This terrible tragedy grieves us all,” Sheikh Mohammed wrote. “We mourn those lost, may their souls rest in peace. Our thoughts are with their loved ones at this time of sorrow and grief.”

5:30 pm: Emirati authorities including the president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, have sent their condolences to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Emirati state news agency WAM reported.

4:00 pm: “We will have information about the circumstances of the incident and the black box in the future, and an investigation is being conducted in cooperation with the Russian authorities and we are waiting to see the results,” Ghaith said.

VIEW GALLERY: FlyDubai plane crash in Russia kills all 62 on board

3:44 pm: It is too early to say what caused a Flydubai plane to crash in Russia on Saturday but Russia and the company are investigating the incident, Flydubai CEO Ghaith Al Ghaith said at a news conference in Dubai.

3:23 pm: Vladimir Markin, the spokesman for the Investigative Committee, said experts have found the cockpit conversation recorder and are continuing the search for another one which records parameters of the flight.

The crash’s cause wasn’t immediately known, but officials suggested it could have been caused by a gust of wind.

3:22 pm: The Boeing 737-800 operated by FlyDubai was carrying 55 passengers, most of them Russian, and seven crew members of various nationalities when it crashed Saturday in the city of Rostov-on-Don while trying to land in strong winds. Russia’s Emergencies Ministry said there were no survivors. Four children were among those killed, FlyDubai said.

3:22 pm: Russian investigators probing the crash of a Dubai airliner in southern Russia that killed all 62 people on board have found one of the plane’s flight recorders.

02:53 pm: The two Indians in the list put out by the Russian authorities are Miss Anju Kathirvel Aiyappan and Mohan Shyam: Ministry of External Affairs, India.

Video: Statement by flydubai CEO Ghaith Al Ghaith regarding FZ981 from Dubai to Rostov-on-Don 19 March 2016:

[facebook url="" / width= "100%"  height="400"]

01:01 pm: According to Flydubai report, the accident resulted in 55 passenger fatalities including 33 women, 18 men and 4 children. The nationalities of the deceased passengers include:

> 44 Russians
> 8 Ukrainians
> 2 Indians
> 1 Uzbekistani

12:51 pm: Russian President Vladimir Putin calls providing assistance to relatives of those killed aboard plane in southern Russia priority: agencies cite Kremlin spokesman.

12:50 pm: Russian investigative committee says human error or technical failure two main theories for plane crash in Russia: Agencies.

10.00 am: Russian investigative committee confirms all 62 people aboard plane are dead.

9.19 am: Statement from the airliner:

flydubai regrets to confirm that flight FZ981 crashed on landing and that fatalities have been confirmed as a result of this tragic accident. The aircraft departed from Dubai International (DXB) at 18:20 GMT bound for Rostov on Don (ROV). The accident occurred in Rostov on Don at approximately 00:50 GMT.
We are doing all we can to gather information as quickly as possible. At this moment our thoughts and prayers are with our passengers and our crew who were on board the aircraft.

We will do everything we can to help those who have been affected by this accident.

We are putting our emergency response in place and we will be working closely with all the authorities involved. We will share as much information as possible just as soon as we can and we will provide updated information on a regular basis.

9.10 am: Flydubai helpline numbers: + 44 203 4508 853 or +9714 293 4100.

8.35 am: Survivors were unlikely in the Flydubai plane crash at the Rostov-on-Don airport in southern Russia, based on preliminary estimates, a representative of the region’s emergency ministry said on Saturday.

8.20 am:

8.00 am: Ruptly posted CCTV footage of the crash

7.45 am:

For all the latest World News, download Indian Express App

  1. A
    Mar 19, 2016 at 8:01 am
    The possible reason of the air mishap: the Flfubai crew had not had enough time for the rest between flights, which led to the "human mistake" in the moment of gear touch with the ground, an expert suggested. It is not a confirmed reason. All Russians deeply regret according to the Russain media.
    1. К
      Куренин %d0%ba%d1%83%d1%80%d0%b5%d0%bd%d0%b
      Mar 19, 2016 at 10:32 am
      1. S
        Mar 19, 2016 at 8:22 am
        Landing in bad weather requires exceptional skill. You cannot rely only on instruments and automation. Recall Asiana OZ214 crash at SFO in July 2013 ...
        1. A
          Agnes Maria
          Mar 19, 2016 at 5:36 am
          Key words, "budget carrier". Why is access to resources divided among the cles? Why are most people, in a world full of the untold greatness of all of human achievement throughout history, forced to use lesser quality airlines, or to take holidays at inconvenient times, and to return despite bad weather in an attempt to make it back in time for their jobs? It is a sickness. These unfortunate souls - like so many casualties of inferior standards rampant in our system - deserved better.
          1. J
            John Smith
            Mar 19, 2016 at 12:09 pm
            poor, poor Russian jews, although they were crooks and thieves. Ordinary ethnic Russians do not have such money for such vacations.
            1. P
              Mar 19, 2016 at 8:24 am
              The plane came down at a 45 degree angle. Not a normal approach.
              1. S
                Shafted mohammed
                Mar 19, 2016 at 4:25 am
                This is quite surprising that it was an American plane that crashed and thus it is news as the Russian planes are known to don't need missile to bring it down as they fall on their own.
                1. T
                  Mar 20, 2016 at 1:56 am
                  10 minutes before Flydubai Flight 981 was cleared for its first attempt to land, S7 Airlines Flight 1159 and Ural Airlines Flight 2758 landed successfully at Rostov-on-Don Airport. 12 minutes after Flydubai Flight 981's first aborted landing after which it went into a holding pattern, Aeroflot Flight 1166 from Moscow Sheremetyevo made the first of three unsuccessful attempts to land at Rostov within the next 35 minutes before diverting to the nearby Krasnodar Airport, landing successfully there. According to ATC communications published online, before the aircraft was established on the localiser, the instrument which indicates the center line of the runway when pilots are landing using instruments rather than visually, pilots reported to ATC that in case they would need to make another go-around, they would climb to flight level 80 (2,400 m). They then reported that they were established on the localiser and continued their descent. At 5.5 km before the runway threshold, when the aircraft was at 450 m, it started climbing again. ATC records appeared to show that the aircraft was going around moments before it crashed. The pilots reported their intention to abort the landing with "Going around, Skydubai 981". ATC advised Flydubai Flight 981 to switch to another air traffic controller ("Skydubai 981, contact Rostov Radar on 121.2"). Flight 981 acknowledged this with "121.2, bye-bye", which was their final transmission. After aborting its second approach, at an alude of 1,230 m, Flydubai Flight 981 began a rapid descent with a vertical speed reaching more than 105 m/s and crashed and completely disintegrated about 250m short of the runway. The pilot has flown at least three different circles trying to reorient to the runway - possibly due to"disorientation". Changing the "pilot flying" (PF) and "pilot monitoring" (PM) roles after the first missed approach has the advantage of the second approach being conducted by a “fresh” set of hands and mitigates the effect of the tunnel vision that often occurs after failed to land at the first attempt. A manually flown go-around in night / Instrument meteorological conditions and light weight can produce an inner ear acceleration illusion known as somatogravic /vestibular illusion. Longitudinal acceleration can be falsely sensed by the pilots as an extreme pitch-up. The sensation can be overwhelming and cause pilots to ignore other sensory inputs, forcing the aircraft into a dive. This was a cause factor in the Gulf Air Flight 072 – Airbus A320 accident in Bahrain almost 16 years ago, the Afriqiyah Airways Flight 771-Airbus A330 crash in Tripoli almost 6 years ago and Tatarstan Airlines Flight 363-Boeing 737-500 crash in Kazan 2 years ago. Similarly several US military jets were also lost during the early days of jet aircraft catapult launches from US aircraft carriers. Since instinct to push during the acceleration is uncontrollable, it is very important to have the right hand OFF the "joy-stick" during the launch. A Boeing 737-800 "pilot flying" (PF) could inadvertently apply pressure to the control column, trip the auto flight system into CWS (Control Wheel Steering), without noticing and the pilot's continued pressure on the stick could result in gt;20 degree dive.
                  1. Load More Comments