Ukrainian Boeing 737 Crashes Near Tehran

Early Wednesday morning on January 8th, a Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 crashed after taking off from Tehran Imam Khomeini Airport. The aircraft was carrying 176 passengers and crew. Unfortunately, at this time, it is believed that everyone on board perished in the accident.

UR-PSR was the aircraft involved in the accident (not pictured). Photo by Daniel Klaffke │ AeroNewsX.

According to some Iranian sources, the pilots reported technical problems after takeoff. Other sources including some amateur footage shot near the crash site had shown the aircraft on fire and pieces flying off the aircraft. Footage of the wreckage also shows bullet holes in the aircraft's tail.

At this time there has also been information from unconfirmed sources that the plane may have been unintentionally taken down by Iranian anti-aircraft weaponry that caused the plane to crash.

This crash is just one of the numerous issues happening in Iran at this time. Just last Friday, the United States launched a drone strike, killing Iranian general Qasem Soleimani, an important military leader for the nation after the Trump Administration had received intelligence that Soleimani was planning an attack on the United States and/or their allies in the coming days.

Subsequently, following his death, Iran promised to retaliate and launched an unsuccessful missile attack on a U.S. military base in Iraq late on Tuesday.

The United States' Aviation Authority, the Federal Aviation Administration, had also recently issued some new temporary guidelines prohibiting any commercial US flights over Iran and Iraq following the escalating tensions. The goal of this ban is to eliminate any potential chances for a hostage crisis should a US plane need to divert to an airport in either of the countries.

Multiple airlines have announced (at the time of writing) that they will reroute/cancel services flying over or flying to Iran and Iraq. Singapore Airlines, Air Canada, Malaysia Airlines and China Airlines say that they will divert services around Iran and Iraq. Meanwhile, EVA Air has announced that it will reroute it’s flights around Iran. Qantas says it will either bump up to 90 people from the flight to make the flight work or add a stopover in Asia to prevent having to compensate affected passengers. Finally, Lufthansa has suspended all services to Tehran and Erbil.

Please note that this story is developing and the facts are subject to change based on new investigation reports and findings both from the crash investigation teams working on the site and with the Iranian military as well.

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