- by theguardian
- 07 Dec 2022
A Russian military jet has crashed into a residential building shortly after taking off near the border with Ukraine, sparking a major fire that has reportedly left at least six people dead and six missing.
Video and photographs uploaded to social media on Monday showed a residential building engulfed in flames in Yeysk, a port and resort town in Russia located just south of the Ukrainian city of Mariupol across the Sea of Azov.
The Su-34 fighter-bomber crashed into the building shortly after take-off at the nearby Yuzhny airbase, the Russian defence ministry said in a statement. The cause of the crash was an engine fire that prevented the jet, which can be used on bombing runs or to engage other aircraft, from gaining altitude.
The plane, which the ministry said was on a training flight, was carrying a payload that detonated after impact, preventing firefighters from reaching the fire for some time. Video showed at least five storeys of the residential flats engulfed in flames.
Both pilots managed to eject from the jet before it struck the building, the ministry said.
A photograph showed at least one of the pilots ejected from the plane before impact, catapulting into the sky and deploying an orange parachute as a massive fireball exploded into the sky behind him.
Interfax reported that at least six people had died, 19 were injured and six remained missing after the crash and ensuing fire.