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Helicopter belonging to top oil official crashes into Yamal lake: two killed

By The Siberian Times reporter
03 November 2014

Mystery over circumstances of crash when chopper was on 'unsactioned' flight.

The Mi-2 helicopter was found in a lake. Two people who were onboard the helicopter died. They are being identified. Picture: Tyumenskaya liniya

The Mi-2 helicopter reportedly owned by a senior official of oil refining company Gazpromneft crashed into Lake Kumalito on the YamalNenets Autonomous Area on Sunday.

Contrary to news agency speculation, Gazpromneft-Noyabrskneftegaz denied any of its top managers were killed in the crash. However, the names of the victims and the aircraft's owner were not disclosed. 

'The helicopter crashed in the Purovsky district, some 50 kilometres southeast of the settlement of Vyngapurovsky. There were two people onboard. Both died,' a local police source told ITAR-Tass.

'Two dead bodies were found at the helicopter crash site,' the source added. 'The Mi-2 helicopter was found in a lake. The cabin is sunken while the tail is over the surface. Two people who were onboard the helicopter died. They are being identified. No more persons were hurt,' added a source from the Emergencies Ministry. 

A company source said 'there were no representatives of the company's top management' on board. The flight 'was not associated with the production activities of the enterprise.'

Earlier there were conflicting reports about the latest helicopter accident to hit Siberia. 

Initially the Emergencies Ministry 'refuted' reports of a crash.  'The helicopter made an emergency landing. There were four people on board, nobody was injured,' it was stated. 

The Investigations Committee has launched a pre-investigation check into the tragedy. Previously, there have been cases of helicopters being used for private hunting trips on unsanctioned flights.

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