Nearly 13 people were killed when a Russian SU-34 fighter plane crashed into a residential complex in the western city of Yeysk during a training mission on Monday, according to Russian state media.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the mishap occurred due to one of the engines catching fire.
“According to the report of the ejected pilots, the cause of the plane crash was the ignition of one of the engines during take-off. At the site of the crash of the Su-34 in the courtyard of one of the residential quarters, the plane’s fuel ignited,” the ministry said in a statement to RIA.
According to the Ministry of Emergency Situations, 13 dead, including three children, were recovered from the collapsed buildings as of Tuesday morning. According to earlier official media reporting, at least 25 persons were wounded.
Yeysk is a port town on the Sea of Azov, separated from occupied Russian territory in southern Ukraine by a thin stretch of water.
Images and videos from the incident’s aftermath showed smoke billowing and fire raging in the residential area. According to officials, a facility that housed hundreds of people was later engulfed in flames.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has directed authorities to offer all necessary help to the crash victims, the Kremlin said in a statement.
According to local officials, the fire, which burned through more than a dozen units in the multistory complex, was eventually put out.
“The remains of the aircraft have been extinguished. The evacuation of residents of nearby houses has been canceled. The fire has been contained,” the head of the Krasnodar Krai region, Veniamin Kondratyev, said on his Telegram channel, citing a statement from the Ministry of Emergency Situations.
According to local government security agencies, approximately 100 people have been evacuated from the building.
According to Roman Bublik, the president of the affected district in Yeysk, occupants of a nine-story building that caught fire would receive all required assistance.