The sport of hockey has been dealt another blow after a plane carrying the Kontinental Hockey League club, Lokomotiv, has crashed and killed at least 45 people.
The death toll has been reported by Russian state news agency RIA Novosti. Two people survived the crash.
The crash occurred at 4 p.m. Moscow time (noon GMT). According to a report, the team was headed to Minsk for the Lokomotiv's opening game. The aircraft, a Yak-42, never gained altitude, traveling about 500 meters until it crashed and burst into flames. A source told the ITAR-Tass News Agency the plane may have hit a tree.
According to police sources from the RIA Novosti report, body parts were found in the Volga River, which is partially where the plane crashed.
Russia doesn't exactly have a spotless record in the air. Last year, 34 people were killed and hundreds were injured in 24 aircraft accidents in the country. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has previously promised to upgrade old Soviet era planes and phase them out.
Many of the KHL players were well known in the U.S. and Canada for their length NHL careers. This included Lokomotiv Head Coach Brad McCrimmon, an 18 year NHL veteran who played for the Boston Bruins, Philadelphia Flyers, Calgary Flames, Hartford Whalers, Phoenix Coyotes and Detroit Red Wings. Also dead were former NHL players Karel Rachunek, Josef Vasicek, Pavol Demitra, Ruslan Salei and Karlis Skrastins. Also dead were eight crew members as well.
Russian national side player Alexander Galimov is one of two survivors, with the other being a crew member. Galimov is currently in a coma according to reports and has suffered burns on 80 percent of his body.
Here's a look at some of the images from the scene as well as a video.