Six Russian air companies have grounded Tupolev Tu-154B aircraft in the wake of the fire on a Kolavia jet at the beginning of the year.

Federal transport supervisory authority Rostransnadzor had recommended suspension of Tu-154B services after the ground blaze at Surgut which killed three people and injured 43 others.

Between them the operators have taken 14 of the type out of service.

Eight of the grounded aircraft are with State Flight Detachment 223 , while two are with Orenair and one is with Kavminvodyavia

Kolavia has a remaining example, as does an operator identified as Aerorent, while the final Tu-154B listed belongs to an Ulyanovsk flight institute.

Rostransnadzor states that it has issued orders to carriers using the type advising that they be grounded until the reason for the 1 January fire is known.

Investigators' suspicions have fallen on electrical systems located within the rear fuselage.

Rostransnadzor says that it has also started work to check the compliance of Kolavia with civil aviation legislation.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news