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St. Patrick’s Day came a little early at an airport in Russia. On Thursday morning, an airplane carrying $368 million in gold and other precious metals fell out of the cargo hatch of an AN-12 shortly after taking off from Yakutsk, Russia.

According to Russian news outlets, a damaged door handle is to blame for the loss of the precious metals. The cargo plane, operated by Air Nimbus, continued to drop more gold as it increased its altitude — gold was found as far as 16 miles away from the airport. The pilots decided to land the plane in nearby Magan, northwest of Yakutsk.

Authorities recovered 172 gold bars, or three tons of gold, from the runway; the plane was carrying over nine tons of precious metals in total.

Reports claim the cargo belonged to Chukota Mining and Geological company, 75% of which is owned by Canadian Kinross Gold.

There were no injuries after the cargo hatch failed, but The Siberian Times reports that the technical engineers who loaded the cargo at Yakutsk Airport (YKS) have been detained.


Featured photo by Chris Clor/Getty Images

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