May 6, 2019 - 10:20 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Forty-one people on board a Russian passenger jet were killed, including at least two children, after the aircraft crash-landed at a Moscow airport on Sunday, bursting into flames on impact and bouncing down the runway.
Aeroflot flight SU 1492 skidded down the runway at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, its rear section ablaze and spilling thick, black smoke.
Once the plane had come to a halt, passengers escaped using emergency slides from the plane's two forward doors, before running away from the burning aircraft.
Initial reports said the Superjet 100 was flying from Moscow to Murmansk, a Russian city in the Arctic circle, when an emergency on board forced it to turn back.
Russia's Interfax news agency reported that a "loss of communication" caused by a "lightning strike" had led to the decision to return to Sheremetyevo. No official cause has yet been provided for the disaster.
Shocking video of the incident showed the plane approach the runway at speed before impacting on the ground, causing it to launch back in the air before hitting the runway again and bursting into flames.
A total of 78 people were aboard the stricken flight, including five crew members. Thirty-seven people survived, five of whom are currently receiving treatment in hospital, said Elena Markovskaya, a spokeswoman for Russia's Investigative Committee.
An American citizen was also killed in the crash, Interfax reported.
A passenger in a plane waiting to depart Moscow posted video on Instagram purportedly showing fire crews attending the scene as the aircraft sat in flames on the runway.