Reports of a mid air collision with a helicopter.
Later retracted by all but one Russian News agency
The speed graph on flightradar is odd to say the least. If its accurate it could suggest engine issues or if not suggests sensor issues.
It was weird even last night I was think we are well overdue a plane crash, 2017 was statistically the safest year on record for Aviation ever.
FR24 data should be taken with quite a few grains of salt, especially if trying to look into fine details
Edit: although from the screenshot in the tweet above, I’m not sure I see anything crazy in it.
I caught a quick glimpse of footage from the accident site on BBC news. The aircraft fragments were quite small and scattered. There didn't seem to be any large pieces of fuselage
In 2013, the same plane had to shut down it's right engine within 15 minutes of take off and return to the airport.
Since September 2017, 3 AN-148s have suffered engine problems which required an engine shut down and a return to the airport or prompt diversion to a local airport within 20 minutes of take off.
It's not enough to draw conclusions obviously, since engine shut downs do happen for different reasons and planes should have the capacity to land with one engine working. But seems to be a lot since September alone.
The captain chose not to de ice before take off.
If plane hadn't been de-iced and ice was the issue would they have made it 20km from the airport?
Captain Fintan Ryan was on Morning Ireland discussing this awful event. He seemed careful not to speculate on likely causes but did note available data indicated wild fluctuations in airspeed before the crash. He also appeared to cast doubt on reports of the aircraft being on fire prior to the crash as the cloud base was very low.
I would like to point out that the raw ADS-B output for this aircraft type (unlike most western jets) does not include speed information. The speed you are seeing on the FR24 graph is an interpretation and can be widely inaccurate
Investigators are thinking that there was ice on the speed sensors and that caused the crash. Would de-icing the plane before take-off have covered the sensors too? Or does de-icing cover the wings only?
Pitot tubes have heaters in them on even vaguely modern Western aircraft; I'd hope its the case in this as its not a particularly antiquated design.