Update: Rostov-On-Don: FlyDubai Crashes in Fireball, Sixty-One Lives Lost

Saturday, March 19, 2016
By George Hatcher

Airport
FlyDubai added these statements:

Statement relating to flydubai flight FZ981

Last updated: 19 Mar 2016 19:57
We are aware of the reports that are circulating in relation to the black box flight recorders. We can confirm that both black box flight recorders have been recovered from the crash site by the local accident investigation team and we continue to do all we can to assist their work.

Statement from the CEO, Ghaith Al Ghaith

Last updated: 19 Mar 2016 15:59
On behalf of everyone at flydubai, I would like to express the devastation we all feel in relation to this morning’s tragic events in Rostov-on-Don. Our primary concern is for the passengers and crew involved at this tragic time. Everyone in our company is in deep shock and our hearts go out to all loved ones of those involved.

We are still in the process of gathering all the information we possibly can, but at this stage I will share the facts that we are able to confirm now. At 00.50GMT today flydubai flight FZ981 crashed at Rostov-on-Don and I am very sorry to say that we believe that there are no survivors. Onboard the aircraft, 55 passengers including 33 women, 18 men and 4 children and 7 crew members of whom 5 were male and 2 were female. The nationalities of the passengers included 44 Russians, 8 Ukrainians, 2 Indians and 1 Uzbekistani.

I am personally leading our accident response with the support of the full management team. At this stage the focus of our efforts is on establishing the facts around the incident and providing all possible support to the authorities.

As I speak members of our team are contacting relatives of the passengers and crew who were on board and we are offering any help we can to those affected.

In addition, we have activated our Emergency Response Team who are on their way now to the site.

We do not yet know all the details of the incident but we are working closely with the authorities to establish precisely what happened. We are making every effort to care for those affected and will provide assistance to the families and friends of those who were on board.

Finally, I would like to say once more how deeply we feel for those affected by this tragedy.

Statement relating to flydubai flight FZ981

Last updated: 19 Mar 2016 11:36
Following our earlier statements more information is now available relating to flydubai flight FZ981.

flydubai very much regrets to confirm that the accident involving flight number FZ981 at Rostov-on-Don earlier today has 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 and 1 Uzbekistani.

We are currently contacting relatives of the passengers and crew who were on board and we are offering any help we can to those affected.

Chief Executive Officer Ghaith Al Ghaith, with the support of the full management team, is leading our response to the accident. At this stage the focus of our efforts is on establishing the facts around the incident and providing all possible support to the authorities.

Our emergency response team are now en-route to Rostov-on-Don.
The aircraft involved was a Next-Generation Boeing 737-800.

Statement relating to flydubai flight FZ981

Last updated: 19 Mar 2016 09:57
flydubai is deeply sorry to confirm the following information in relation to the tragic accident involving flight FZ981 which was flying from Dubai International (DXB) to Rostov on Don (ROV). While we are still awaiting final confirmation, it is with great sadness that we report we believe there are no survivors. We are unable to provide more specific details at this moment but we will provide updates as soon as we possibly can.

At this moment our thoughts and prayers are with the families of our passengers and crew who were on board the aircraft. We are working with the local emergency services and other agencies who are at the scene.

flydubai is in the process of verifying the passenger list however preliminary numbers indicate 55 passengers and 7 crew on board on the Next-Generation Boeing 737-800 aircraft. The aircraft had departed Dubai International (DXB) at 18.20GMT on Friday 18 March and was due to arrive that evening at 22.40GMT.

Speaking about the incident, flydubai CEO Ghaith Al Ghaith, said, “We offer our deepest condolences to the families of the passengers and crew. Everyone at flydubai is in deep shock and our hearts go out to the families and friends of those involved. We don’t yet know all the details of the accident but we are working closely with the authorities to establish the cause. We are making every effort to care for those affected and will provide assistance to the loved ones of those on board.”

flydubai is activating family reception centres for relatives of passengers and we have issued the following numbers for relatives to call:
+44 203 450 8853 (UK)
+971 (0) 42934100 (UAE)
In addition we have set up a media call centre that can be contacted on the following number:
+1407 205 1813
+971 55 517 4642 (Arabic language)
An update will be issued as soon as more information becomes available.

Sixty-one people were aboard a FlyDubai Boeing 737 that crashed today on the second approach to Rostov-On-Don in Russia, in bad weather conditions. There were no survivors. The Regional Emergencies Ministry said “The Boeing-737 fell amid poor visibility conditions 50-100 meters [164-328 feet] left of the runway.” The plane was en route from Dubai to Russia’s Rostov-on-Don. The pilots failed to land on their first pass, and on the second pass crashed after they missed the runway. The time difference between both approaches at first report appears to be nearly 2 hours. The plane had been airborne for just over six hours when it came down; AV. Herald reports that the plane carried fuel for 8.31 hours.

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