Three dead in Russian copter crash

March 16, 2013 at 10:48 AM

PYATIGORSK, Russia, March 16 (UPI) -- Three crew members were killed Saturday when a military helicopter crashed in the Russian republic of Chechnya, a law enforcement official said.

The pilot survived and has been hospitalized, RIA Novosti reported.

Heavy fog in the vicinity of the Khankala military base has been blamed for the crash of the Mi-8 helicopter.

Only crew members were aboard the craft at the time of the crash, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

It was the second helicopter crash in Russia in two days.

An Mi-8 crashed on takeoff Friday when its rotor blade hit the ground in the city of Khabarovsk. No one was injured, but crew members face prosecution for violating flight rules, investigators said.

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