MOSCOW (AP) — Rescuers on Sunday recovered one more body following a helicopter crash in Russia’s far eastern region of Kamchatka, local emergency officials said. A total of four bodies, out of eight people missing, have been recovered.
The Mi-8 helicopter with 16 people on board crashed into Kurile Lake on the Kamchatka Peninsula on Thursday. Eight people managed to escape the sinking aircraft and were rescued by rangers of the Kronotsky natural reserve, who rushed to the crash site on boats.
Three bodies were recovered on Saturday. Kamchatka’s branch of the Russian Emergency Ministry said that the search operation was suspended after the fourth body was recovered on Sunday because of weather conditions.
Kamchatka, a pristine peninsula with numerous volcanoes, is known for its rugged beauty and rich wildlife. Kurile Lake is up to 316 meters (1,037 feet) deep and covers an area of 77 square kilometers (30 square miles).
Authorities have banned Vityaz-Aero, a local carrier that operated the crashed helicopter, from transporting passengers pending an investigation into a possible violation of flight safety rules. The company is the biggest of several local carriers which fly tourists to the Kronotsky reserve, a top tourist attraction that houses Russia’s only geyser basin.
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