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YAKUTSK, July 2 (Itar-Tass) - Twenty-three people have died in a helicopter crash in Yakutia, and five have survived, including a child, deputy chairman of the Yakutia government Anatoly Skrybykin said during a telephone conference on Tuesday.
"The helicopter fell after its rotor hit a rock. Three crew members and a woman with a child survived the crash," Skrybykin said, "among the fatalities is regional legislator Alexander Morozkin, head of the repubilc's investment company Viktor Yefimov and ALROSA company representatives."
According to the Yakutia official, there were 11 children among the passengers aboard the helicopter.
The Mi-8 made a hard landing supposedly because of loss of control, an official source told Itar-Tass.
According to reports, the Mi-8 fell on a hill when it was out of control because of air flows.
The information that the Mi-8 made a hard landing 45 km northwest of the airfield at the settlement of Deputatsky in the Ust-Yana district was received by the Russian Emergencies Ministry’s crisis management centre in Yakutia at 05:20 Moscow time on Tuesday. The captain gave the information, using satellite communication, the press service of the Far Eastern regional centre of the Emergencies Ministry said.