MOSCOW, November 7 (RIA Novosti) - A Tu-142M3 reconnaissance plane from Russia's Pacific Fleet has crashed in the Tatar Strait in Russia's Far East, the Defense Ministry said in a statement on Saturday.
Tu-142 Bear F is a Russian maritime reconnaissance/anti-submarine warfare (ASW) turboprop aircraft. It is a modified version of the Tu-95 Bear strategic bomber.
"The plane was on a combat training mission when it disappeared from radar screens over the Tatar Strait," the statement said.
The Tatar Strait separates mainland Russia from the island of Sakhalin.
The crash site has been located at about 20 kilometers (12.5 miles) offshore by several ships and planes. The search for the crew is underway.
A Russian military source told RIA Novosti that there were at least nine people on board the plane.
According to preliminary data, the crash has been caused by a technical failure.