One year after, and on the basis of the latest information, we now have reconstructed images of the CEO of Total’s Falcon crash scenario. On 20 October 2014, shortly before midnight, local time, Christophe de Margerie (Total’s CEO), two pilots and a stewardess were onboard a Falcon-50, at the Vnukovo International Airport, 20 miles (30 kilometres) southwest of Moscow. There was drizzle, fog, snow on the edge of the runway, and visibility was below 400 yards (350 metres).
At 11:57 pm, the jet ligned up on the 9,800 feet (3,000 metres) long No. 6 runway, which was then free. The control tower cleared the aircraft for takeoff, and the pilots confirmed the authorization. Ten seconds later, the air traffic controller was notified by the ground radar system of a vehicle movement heading south along runway 19 (which intersects runway 6), to the left of runway 6, but neither the driver of the vehicle, nor the control tower, reacted. The pilots then applied full power to the engines and the Falcon began picking up speed. Fourteen seconds after, and still on the ground, the pilots saw an object, identified as "a car crossing the runway." The pilots did not recognize it as a danger and continued acceleration.
Another fourteen seconds later, having then travelled a total of 1,100 yards (1,000 metres), the aircraft started rotation ( lifting its nose ). Not until then did the pilots realize that the vehicle crossing the runway was in fact a snowplough. It was too late, the Falcon had left the ground, but the left side collided with the vehicle at over 150 mph (248 km/h), banked right and struck the ground, killing all four people onboard instantly.
The driver of the snowplough, Vladimir Martynenko, had an alcohol content of 0.6 grams in his blood. In the control tower, it was a trainee who was on duty under the supervision of an instructor. According to the Russian Criminal Code, all three, together with the head of the airport's runway services could face up to seven years in prison.
The Russian Interstate Aviation Committee (MAK) plans to release its report by the end of the year.