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Airline Blames Crash That Killed 50 on Defective Parts

December 26, 1995 GMT

BAKU, Azerbaijan (AP) _ Defective spare parts caused the Azerbaijan Airlines crash that killed 50 people and injured 32, a company official said Tuesday.

The Russian-made Tu-134 airliner crashed on Dec. 5 when both engines failed minutes after departing the Azerbaijani city of Nakhichevan on a flight to the capital, Baku.

An international commission determined that vibration caused the nuts on the engine mounts to loosen and fall off. The engine turbines then shifted and were damaged, causing the crash, ITAR-Tass news agency reported, citing Nazim Javadov, deputy head of the government-owned airline.

Javadov said the use of the defective parts for repairs was sanctioned by specialists from the Russian company, Perm Motors, that had manufactured the engines.

The specialists judged that the parts, though not up to standard, would nevertheless hold up.

The aging airliner was overhauled at the Bykovo Aircraft Repairs Factory in Russia two years ago.