MOSCOW—The CEO of French oil giant Total SA was killed when his corporate jet collided with a snow removal machine Monday night at Moscow’s Vnukovo Airport, the company said.
Total “confirms with deep regret and sadness” that Chairman and CEO Christophe de Margerie died in a private plane crash at the Moscow airport, the company said in a press release posted on its website.
Airport officials told Russia’s Tass news agency that the collision occurred at 11:57 p.m. October 20, killing de Margerie and three crew members, all of them French citizens.
“The thoughts of the management and employees of the Group go out to Christophe de Margerie’s wife, children and loved ones as well as to the families of the three other victims,” the company news release said.
A representative of the transport investigative department told Tass that the French-made Dassault Falcon 50 business jet, headed for France, collided with the snow removal machine during takeoff. Airport officials said the driver of the snow removal machine was not hurt.
Visibility at the time of the crash was 350 metres (1,150 feet), airport officials told Tass.
Paris-based Total is the fifth-largest publicly-traded integrated international oil and gas company in the world, with exploration and production operations in more than 50 countries, according to a profile on the company’s website.