Hero pilot and crew who landed Russian plane in cornfield and saved 233 Lives

Hero pilot and crew who landed Russian plane in cornfield and saved 233 Lives

Yesterday Ural Airlines Flight U6-178, an Airbus A321-211, registration VQ-BOZ, performing flight U6-178 from Moscow Zhukovsky (Russia) to Simferopol (Ukraine), was substantially damaged when it force landed to a cornfield shortly after takeoff due to a dual bird strike and engine failure.

The aircraft with 226 passengers and 7 crew, was in the initial climb through 750 feet out of Zkukovsky’s runway 12 when the aircraft flew through a flock of birds and ingested birds into both engines (CFM56).

Captain Damir Yusupov brought the Ural Airlines Flight U1678 down in a cornfield today with no power in either engine and with the landing gear retracted.

An engine fire on board forced the 41-year-old to land the plane in a field near Zhukovsky International Airport in Moscow shortly after take-off.

Hero pilot and crew who landed Russian plane in cornfield and saved 233 Lives

A day after being hailed as a hero for his quick thinking in the cockpit as the plane lost speed, Yusupov told reporters on August 16 that his only chance was to down the Airbus 321 with 233 people on board in the farmer’s field near Zhukovsky airport on the outskirts of Moscow.

“I wasn’t afraid,” Yusupov, speaking in the city of Yekaterinburg, said. “I did what I had to do…I saved the plane, the passengers, the crew. I think that was the only decision. I don’t think I’m a hero,” he added modestly.

Emergency officials said 74 people sought medical assistance after the landing, while the Health Ministry said 23 were taken to hospital for injuries suffered in the crash. All but one were released after being treated.

Emergency officials said 74 people sought medical assistance after the landing, while the Health Ministry said 23 were taken to hospital for injuries suffered in the crash. All but one were released after being treated.

Hero pilot and crew who landed Russian plane in cornfield and saved 233 Lives

Vladimir Putin signed the Executive Order On Presenting Russian Federation State Awards to the Crew of a Ural Airlines (Sverdlovsk Region) Flight.

The title of Hero of Russia was awarded to co-pilot Georgy Murzin and aircraft Captain Damir Yusupov for courage and heroism displayed while performing their duty in extreme conditions.

The Order of Courage was awarded to senior flight attendant Dmitry Ivlitsky and flight attendants Nadezhda Vershinina, Dmitry Goncharenko, Aliya Slyakayeva and Yana Yagodina for courage and selflessness displayed while performing their duty in extreme conditions.

Flight attendant Nadezhda Vershinina said that during the evacuation the crew acted according to the instructions, adding: ‘We work out such situations on simulators, there were no surprises.’

Russia’s Rosaviatsiya state aviation agency chief, Alexander Neradko, said the plane was fully loaded with 16 tonnes of jet fuel.

After the evacuation, passengers rushed to embrace and thank Yusupov and his flight attendants who helped them exit the stricken Airbus.

Bird strikes on planes occur regularly around the world even though airports use bird distress signals, air cannons and other means to chase birds away from runways. Plane engines are designed to withstand occasional bird strikes but a collision with a flock of birds can result in serious trouble.

Safety concerns have plagued Russia’s airline industry since the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, though standards are widely recognised to have risen sharply in recent years, particularly on international routes.

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