MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The ministry confirmed earlier that the aircraft was carrying 32 servicemen and seven crew members on a routine flight when it crash-landed off the Tiksi airfield in the Sakha Republic. It said four search and rescue helicopters have transported the victims to the local hospital for treatment.
"A special Russian Defense Ministry commission is working at the site of the Il-18 emergency landing, whose experts demounted and recovered on-board recorders for delivery to a specialized laboratory and their inspection," the ministry said.
A medical team aboard an Il-76 aircraft equipped with medical modules has been dispatched to the Sakha Republic to transport the passengers and crew members to military clinical hospitals in Moscow and St. Petersburg, the ministry said earlier.
Local authorities say strong gusty crosswinds are believed to be the primary cause of the Il-18 emergency landing.