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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russian Plane Makes Forced Landing in Siberia

NOVOSIBIRSK, Russia - A Russian jet with 89 people on board made a safe emergency landing in the Siberian city of Novosibirsk after the landing gear on its right side failed to lock shut, an airport spokesman said Wednesday.

Oleg Shulmin said a TU-154 airliner belonging to the Sibir airline took off from Irkutsk in eastern Siberia for Moscow early Wednesday with 80 passengers and nine crew. But the right side of its undercarriage failed to retract after take-off.

"Everything went fine on take-off, but the undercarriage seized up somehow. It's not clear why. Mechanics are trying to sort it out now," Shulmin said.

"The landing went smoothly and the passengers have transferred to another plane to continue their journey to Moscow."

A second airport spokesman, Gleb Osokin, told Reuters a commission was trying to establish why a lock in the jet's undercarriage had failed to secure after the wheels had initially retracted properly.

The crew realised soon after take-off that there was a problem under the plane, Osokin said, but they decided to fly to Novosibirsk to use up fuel because the TU-154 has no system for emptying its tanks in flight.