Wednesday, September 07, 2011

A plane crash involving a professional hockey team (8x UPDATED)

11:18 a.m. EDT: I'll not be able to update for a few hours; lunch followed by back-to-back classes. What a terrible day for Lokomotiv and the sports world. May God grant the families who have lost their loved ones peace.




8th UPDATE: 11:12 a.m. EDT: Another tweet from Dmitry Chesnokov: Neurologists are now saying Galimov (the player-survivor) is unlikely to survive his injuries even after the surgery. Docs keep fighting.

Multiple agents are also beginning to confirm that their clients were on the plane. Within the last couple minutes, Pavel Demitra's agent and Ruslan Salei's representatives have acknowledged their deaths.

7th UPDATE: 10:56 a.m. EDT: The Lokomotiv team roster, as it appears on the team's Website. Meanwhile, Russian journalist Dmitry Chesnokov tweets the following: Galimov (the lone survivor from the team) has over 80% of his body covered in burns; he had a surgery, according to doctors. He adds in another tweet: Russian aviation officials are saying the plane may have been over the allowed take-off weight. It crashed 7-8 sec after hitting radar

6th UPDATE: 10:53 a.m. EDT: Russia Today sends the following tweet: Survivor hoсkey player Alexandr Galimov hospitalized with burns to 80% of his body. (I have not seen any other information regarding confirmation of a second survivor and who it might be.)

5th UPDATE: 10:45 a.m. EDT: The following photo appears on the Sov Sport Website


The photo does not indicate any specific names; the caption indicates that the team was involved in the plane crash.

4th UPDATE: 10:40 a.m. EDT: The National Hockey League has confirmed that former NHL players were involved in the crash. It reports:
According to Sov Sport, Lokomotiv has confirmed that the entire main roster, plus four players from the youth team, were on the plane.

The Lokomotiv roster was full of players with NHL ties.


The team's head coach, Brad McCrimmon, played in the NHL and most recently served as an assistant coach with the Detroit Red Wings before taking the Yaroslavl job in May. Defenseman Karel Rachunek, Ruslan Salei and Karlis Skrastins, as well as forwards Pavol Demitra and Josef Vasicek  all spent a good deal of time in the NHL. Forward Alexander Vasyunov played a handful of games with the New Jersey Devils  last season.


According to the reports on the crash, the plane, a Yakovlev Yak-42 passenger jet, went down and caught fire shortly immediately after taking to the air, crashing less than 2 kilometers from the airport.
3rd UPDATE: 10:36 a.m. EDT: Russian journalist Anissa Naouai tweets: Total people on board 45, 43 dead, 2 in critical condition at local hospital. 37 team members and 8 crew.

2nd UPDATE: 10:31 a.m. EDT: Czech sports writer Michal Petrak tweets All 3 Czechs - Karel Rachůnek, Josef Vašíček and Jan Marek - are dead. RIP

1st UPDATE: 10:24 a.m. EDT: Reuters has updated the death toll and the number of people on board in this tweet: FLASH: Russian Emergencies Ministry says 43 people feared dead in plane crash, 45 were aboard.
 
ORIGINAL POST: The Associated Press reports that an airplane likely to be carrying multiple members of a hockey team in Russia's KHL has crashed.
The Russian Emergency Situations Ministry said the Yak-42 plane crashed immediately after taking off from an airport near the city of Yaroslavl, on the Volga River about 150 miles northeast of Moscow. It said one person survived the crash with grave injuries.
The ministry said the plane was carrying the Lokomotiv ice hockey team from Yaroslavl. The team was heading to Minsk, the capital of Belarus, where it was to play Thursday against Dinamo Minsk in the opening game of the season of the Continental Hockey League.
The Russian Emergency Situations Ministry said the Yak-42 plane crashed immediately after leaving an airport near the city of Yaroslavl, on the Volga River about 150 miles northeast of Moscow. It said one person survived the crash with grave injuries.
The weather was sunny and clear at the time.
The KHL is an international club league that pits together teams from Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Latvia and Slovakia.
Lokomotiv Yaroslavl is a leading force in Russian hockey and finished third in the KHL last year. It's coached by Canadian Brad McCrimmon and includes several international stars in its ranks, such as Stefan Liv of Sweden and Czech Republic players Josef Vaicek and Jan Marek.


The photo above appears on the CTV Website, which also reports that 36 people are dead and one person remains in critical condition.

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