Earlier today, Flydubai flight FZ981 from Dubai to Rostov-on-Dov crashed and caught fire during an unsuccessful landing attempt in bad weather at Rostov-on-Don Airport. All 55 passengers and 7 crew members were killed in the untoward accident which occurred about 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) south of Moscow.
The official information from FlyDubai mentioned that the flight was carrying 55 passengers including 33 women, 18 men and 4 children. It also revealed the nationalities of all passengers, there were 44 Rusians, 8 Ukrainians, 2 Indians and 1 Uzbekistani. The airliner offered condolences for the families of those passengers.
FlyDubai CEO Ghaith al-Ghaith, “Our primary concern is for the families of the passengers and crew who were on board. Everyone at FlyDubai is in deep shock and our hearts go out to the families and friends of those involved.”
The flight had departed from Dubai International Airport at 18.20GMT on 18 March (11.50 PM Indian Standard Time – 18 March) and was scheduled to arrive at 22.40GMT on the same evening (04.10 AM – 19 March Indian Standard Time).
Flight-tracking website Flightradar24 reported that the plane missed its approach then entered a holding pattern and tried to land again before contact was lost. “The plane was circling for about two hours before making another attempt to land,” it added.
Reportedly, Governor of the Rostov region Vasily Golubev said that the plane crashed about 250 meters (800 feet) short of the runway. He was also quoted as saying the by all appearances, the cause of the air crash was the strongly gusting wind, approaching a hurricane level. The Russian emergencies ministry said that the plane clipped the ground with its wing which broke the aircraft and it caught fire.
FlyDubai was set up by the Government of Dubai in March 2008 as the first low-cost airline and the airline made its first flight in the following year. The airline has been flying to Rostov-on-Don since year 2013. This is the airliner’s first crash since its commencement.