Russian plane loses almost nine tonnes of gold amid incident in Yakutsk

Russian plane loses almost nine tonnes of gold amid incident in Yakutsk

The crew made a decision to take the cargo plane back to Yakutsk after the aircraft lost the cargo as far as 26 kilometres from the airport, according to The Siberian Times report.

According to Tass, an An-12 cargo plane operated by the airline Nimbus carrying about nine tonnes of precious metals lost at least third of its cargo during takeoff from the Yakutsk airport.

The plane and its crew managed to land safely in a city roughly 7 miles away, and airport authorities secured the runway to collect the valuable cargo. The estimates of the spillage around the runway have still not been ascertained.

The plane had been forced to turn back to the airport, and police quickly closed off the area to prevent a gold rush, according to media reports. Investigators say the problem on take-off was likely due to the cargo not being properly stabilised.

The plane bound for Krasnoyarsk then made an emergency landing after the discovery that it had been haemorrhaging valuables
The plane bound for Krasnoyarsk then made an emergency landing after the discovery that it had been haemorrhaging valuables

"172 bars have been found weighing around 3.4 tonnes", the area's interior ministry told TASS state news agency.

Nobody was hurt in the incident. The cargo was reported to be owned by Chukota Mining and Geological company.

Yakutsk Airport insists that the plane was operational and was ready for the flight.

"I wish I were in Yakutsk", one person wrote wistfully, while another joked that Yakutia is such a rich region that "gold just pours from the sky". The precious metals had come from the Kupol mine in Russia's Chukotka region, and in total weighed about 18,600 pounds.

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