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Survivor of helicopter crash pleads for help by phone surrounded by 19 dead

By The Siberian Times reporter
22 October 2016

'Where is the help? Will there be any help?' begged injured Alexey Veremev, 42, as he used cell phone to report air tragedy.

When rescuers reached the scene, only three were alive including Alexey Veremev. Picture: EMERCOM

The Mi-8 helicopter with 22 passengers and crew on board crashed 80 kilometres from Novy Urengoy in Yamalo-Nenets autonomous region. Only three survived, one of whom reported the horror in a dramatic phone call to emergency services in which he initially reported four were still alive. 

'Three are moaning, I am the fourth. And the rest do not even moan,' he said. 'One guy was able to climb out, he wanders around the helicopter, but he is kind of insane. I do not know where we are. Where is the help? Will there be any help? I cannot get out of the helicopter, my leg got caught.'

When rescuers reached the scene, only three were alive including Alexey Veremev. Earlier there had been reports that one of the pilots also contacted emergency services after the passenger. 

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Helicopter

The helicopter was en route to Urengoy from the Suzunskoye oil field in Krasnoyarsk region. Picture: The Siberian Times, Skol

The injured passengers are in serious condition with head injuries, hypothermia and fractures. One has a fracture of the spine, another a broken hip and ribs. The crash took place in a 'thick fog' and the temperaturewas around minus 7C as survivors waited five hours for rescuers to arrive.

'Rescuers that arrived at the site have entered the damaged helicopter, where they found three people in serious condition,' said a law enforcement source as the operation to save the living passengers was underway. The other 19 passengers were killed,' the source said.

One injured passenger was taken to closest Urengoy settlement by a Skol company helicopter, while other two survivors receive medical assistance on the spot as their condition was assessed as critical.

It is understood the survivor flown to Urengoy was Alexey Veremev. The dead are mainly workers for a subsidiary of oil giant Rosneft. 

Veremev

Alexey Veremev, 42, one of the three survivors. Picture: Social media

The Emergencies Ministry said reports came at 6:57 pm Moscow time on Friday that a Mi-8 helicopter crash landed in 80 km north-west of the Urengoy settlement in the Purovsky district of the Yamal-Nenets.

The helicopter was en route to Urengoy from the Suzunskoye oil field in Krasnoyarsk region. The Russian Investigative Committee (IC) opened a criminal case into the crash.

'Investigators consider three main causes of the crash - violation of flight security measures, equipment malfunction, unfavourable weather conditions,' said a press statement. 

Comments (1)

Meanwhile in Russia... now we are just awaiting for the dashcam video being uploaded on Youtube.
And as we are at the time of the year when the "winter tires" goes on the car, which in many cases in Russia means, keeping 10+++ years old summer tires on the car which turns in to slippery Bakelite when the mercury drops below zero.
So If I could only make one advice to my lovely neighbors (yes, we share a 1,340 km long border with Russia), please ALWAYS use stud tires during the winter, even 10+++ years old are much better than non-stud tires, no necessity to play the daredevil stunt driver showing of your "masculinity", a heavy wind gust on an icy road pulling the car over the wrong side smashing into a truck isn't fun.
ps. If I may suggest, here you have one of the best YT channels with daily Russian dashcam car crash video compilations, enjoy. ;)
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCo4qhP1aU-BM0oi3O7qnhmw (Подборки ДТП от Сереги)
ps2. oh, and I am really sorry for the helicopter accident, never cheat on safety, always keep your seat belt on, even in a helicopter!
Vaeltaja, Finland
23/10/2016 02:41
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