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Sukhoi superjet: A belly crash during test flight

Sukhoi superjet crash: The new Russian aircraft made a belly landing during a flight to test its landing gear system. The Sukhoi superjet 100 is a medium-range $35 million aircraft.

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A fire truck sprays water over a Russian-made Sukhoi Superjet 100 during the unveiling ceremony of the first of the 12 jetliners purchased by Sky Aviation in Indonesia in February 2013. The superjet crashed during a test flight Sunday in Iceland, landing on its belly.

Tatan Syuflana/AP/File

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A Sukhoi Superjet made a belly landing during a test flight on Sunday at Iceland's Keflavik airport in Reykjavik, according to a statement by its Russian manufacturer.

The Superjet program hit uncertainty May 2012 after one of its planes crashed in Indonesia during a promotional flight, in which 45 people were killed.

That investigation concluded that the crash was caused by pilot error, not a defect in the aircraft, AvWeb.com reported.

"The crew ignored repeated warnings from the aircraft's systems of the impending terrain conflicts because they thought the alerts were the result of a database problem. In fact, it appears the crew never knew what they hit since they turned off the terrain avoidance functions just before the aircraft, on a demo flight with potential customers, hit Mt. Salak. According to The Associated Press, cockpit voice recordings show the captain of the aircraft was chatting with a potential customer as the aircraft hit the mountain."

At the final stage of a test flight to evaluate the Sukhoi Superjet 100's automatic landing system on Sunday, the aircraft "touched the runway with retracted landing gear," Sukhoi Civil Aircraft said in a statement.

One certification center expert injured his leg during evacuation, but the other four people aboard were unharmed, the statement said.

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