Russian news reports say the hatch of a cargo plane carrying precious metals accidentally flew open upon takeoff — scattering at least 3 tons of gold on the runway.

An investigation is underway after the incident Thursday at the airport in the far e   ast city of Yakutsk, according to the Tass news agency.

An An-12 plane operated by the airline Nimbus took off for Krasnoyarsk carrying 9.3 tons of gold and other precious metals, according to a statement from the state Investigative Committee quoted by Tass. Damage to a door handle caused it to fly open and spill some of the metal.

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Authorities recovered 172 gold bars weighing 3.4 tons, Tass quoted Interior Ministry officials as saying.

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No one was hurt in the incident. Images circulating on social media showed gold bars scattered across a runway.

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