Russian Crash kills 88

Tuesday, September 16, 2008
By George Hatcher

Click to view full size photo at
Contact photographer Karev Valentin

Monday Russian forensic scientists began using DNA testing to identify bodies and relatives visited the site; some were taken to the hospital in shock.

What: Aeroflot Nord Boeing 737-500 Flight 821, en route from Moscow to Perm. The 737 had been leased by Aeroflot from Dublin-based Pinewatch Limited from late July until March 2013.
Where: Crashed just outside the airport but inside the Perm, Siberia city limits. (conflicting reports say the plane landed in either a swamp or a ravine.) It missed an apartment block.
When: 3:40 a.m. Sunday
Who: Eighty-two passengers — including seven children and six crew members. Multiple nationalities were on the flight, including nine from Azerbaijan, five from Ukraine, and one each from France, Switzerland, Latvia, the United States, Germany, Turkey, and Italy,
Why: Bolshoye Savino Airport air traffic control lost communication with pilots at at about 3,600 feet just before landing about 3:10 a.m The crash also disabled a section of Trans-Siberian railway. The weather was described as “mediocre.”

  • Crises centers for relatives were set up in Moscow’s Sheremetyevo-1 airport and in Perm.
  • The airline pledged to pay “compensation on obligatory accident insurance in full, which would make up to two million rubles (some 80,000 dollars) per victim.”
  • In 2007, 33 Russian aviation accidents that left 318 dead, raising concern over Russia’s civil aviation. Experts blame faults in the training of and aging fleets.
  • Transport Minister Igor Levitin will be leading the investigation.
  • A witness said “It was burning while still in the sky and it looked like a falling comet.” The plane hit the ground sharply — at a 30 or 40 degree angle.

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Flight record of the downed plane:
(Detailed records from
Boeing 737 – MSN 25792
Airline Aeroflot-Nord
Status : Active
Registration : VP-BKO
Airline Aeroflot-Nord
Country : Russia
Date : 2004 – Codes 5N AUL Callsign : dvina
Web site :
General information & flightlog

Serial number 25792 LN:2353
Type 737-505
First flight date 20/08/1992
Test registration
Flights recorded

Operators of the aircraft
Delivery date | Airline | Registration | Remark
08/09/1992 Braathens LN-BRW
24/09/1992 Xiamen Airlines B-2591
12/03/1993 China Southwest Airlines B-2591
01/03/2003 Air China B-2591 Stored 03/2008
29/05/2008 Aeroflot-Nord VP-BKO

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