Ukrainian 737 crashes in Iran killing 176

A Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 has crashed in Tehran, killing all 176 onboard. 

The aircraft UR-PSR (MSN 38124), operating as flight PS752 bound for Kiev, took off from Imam Khomeini’s runway 29R at 06:12, but lost contact with air traffic control just six minutes later before crashing near Tehran. 

Reports from the Iranian Civil Aviation Organisation point to no survivors among the 167 passengers and nine crew members.

Meteorological data from Imam Khomeini airport indicate temperatures marginally below freezing but no adverse weather otherwise.

“Investigation and rescue teams have been sent to the accident site,” says the CAO. “The process of data collection and accident investigation has begun.”

According to a tweet from Ukrainian foreign minister Vadym Prystaiko, 82 Iranians, 63 Canadians, and 11 Ukrainians died in the crash. In addition, 10 Swedes, four Afghans, three Germans and three British nationals were among the victims, he said.

Ukraine International Airlines says the aircraft disappeared from radar contact “just minutes after departure” from Tehran.

The carrier says it is suspending flights to Tehran “indefinitely” in the aftermath of the accident, although it has not indicated whether this relates directly to the crash or the recent US-Iranian political tensions.

UIA states that it is “working closely with the aviation authorities”, to “do its best” to find out the causes of the accident.

UR-PSR entered the UIA fleet in 2016, directly from the manufacturing facility, and underwent scheduled maintenance on 6 January 2020.

Iran’s ministry of transport states that no flight recorders have yet been recovered from the accident scene.